Journey through space to the Planet Fabulous, where the Ruler of the Universe will see you shortly.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Fowl Advertising

Ah yes, come in Nando’s. Sit down. I won’t keep you.

Now, it’s about this new slogan I’ve been seeing outside your restaurants this week. Let me see if I’ve got it right. “We put the chic in chicken”, is that correct? Yes? Good to hear I’ve got it right.

Please understand that I’m not angry. You’re not in trouble. No. No, stop crying. No, this isn’t like that thing with MacDonald’s in Form 3B last year. I would just like to invite you to, perhaps, consider what the word “chic” means to most of us.

No, Nando’s, that’s with a “K” on the end. Yes, I know, they’re very fluffy and we all go “ahhhh” at Easter about them, but no, I think perhaps you need some extra sessions with Miss Miningpost in English after school.

I’m just the average man in the street, of course. Which is how I came to be passing your restaurant in the first place. But here’s what “chic” suggests to me. It’s the word you think on seeing a French woman looking at her watch at Waterloo Station as men around her collide into each other. It’s the word suggested by impeccably done make-up on someone sitting on a stool in a bar as she drinks a cocktail you can’t even spell. It is the sunlit-caught tendrils of thin smoke from a Gitanes ghosting around the beret-covered head of a Gallic angel. It’s Juliette Binoche first thing in the morning, last thing at night, or any point of the day between.

No. No, that’s not Juliette Binoche. Do pay attention Nando’s as I know we’ve had this conversation before. Brigitte Bardot is... come on, you remember... That’s right. Not a human being, but a handbag made from a cow who wasn’t quite killed and came back to life. That’s right. See, these old lessons do come back, don’t they? Jolly good.

Anyway, I believe the point I am making here is that what “chic” is not in any way, at all, beyond any exception, is pallet after pallet of foetid damp clammy chicken flesh exposed to flame and slammed onto featureless plates in an eatery that marks a gravestone for the death of Western Society’s imagination.

I mean, I have to ask you Nando’s, what the hell were you thinking? What made you feel anyone would be interested in a deathly-cold slab of bulging puckered pale flesh long past its prime?

Yes, all right. Your point is taken. A lot of people did watch Britney on the MTV Awards. But would anyone want to dowse her in Piri-Piri Sauce and roast her in an oven? Apart from Mr Federline, of course. And Mr Timberlake. And anyone with a sense of humour.

No. I’m sorry, Nando’s. But this will not do. I want you to go home and make some changes. I don’t care if you have just spent one point two million pounds on re-branding. You should have thought of that before you started maligning class and aesthetics for your tawdry shop.

What was that? No, I didn’t “hear you”. Say that again.

Oh. Oh I see, Nando’s. You feel I’m being elitist in mocking your establishment, do you? Oh dear, life is so very jolly unfair isn’t it? Everyone picks on you, do they? Well let me tell you, I visited one of your restaurants a couple of months ago with my lady wife to mark our anniversary. I always like to support my pupils where I can. Of course, this was before all this “chic” nonsense.

When tackled by one of your backwards functionaries about what I wanted, I asked what was recommended. It was a choice between, “chicken, eggs and chips”, “chicken, beans, chips” or “chicken, beans, chips and chicken”. There was also “mystery surprise” which turned out on further investigation to be chicken. Which I would suggest is neither a "mystery" nor a "surprise". There was also “chicken, chicken, chips, beans and chicken”, “chicken, beans, coleslaw, chicken, chicken and chicken” and “chicken, chicken, chips, chicken, eggs, chicken, chicken, chicken, salad, chicken, chicken, chicken” an option which I suspected goes on, only a stag party of Vikings at the next table started singing and I didn’t hear the rest.

Now, I do not particularly appreciate chicken and so I remonstrated with the functionary about these options. I was offered “chicken, salad and chips” because – and I quote – “that doesn’t have much chicken in it”. Needless to say, my wife and I left. I wasn’t going to bring this up as I like my pupils to have a chance in life, but I’m afraid you’ve brought it upon yourself. Now go back to class.

On your way can you show the lawyers for Cleese, Palin, Chapman, Idle, Jones and Gilliam in please? Thank you.


Jo said...

If one does not appreciate chicken, one wonders what you were doing going to a chicken restaurant to eat.

Otherwise, I agree with everything else...Nandos is disgusting and common - definitely not chic.

Inexplicable DeVice said...

Good Heavens! Turn my back for a couple of days and you've projectile vomited a slew of witty and hilarious posts.
I'm just not used to this rapidity.

* nips out to the field over the river with a party-popper *

Well, one can't let those scientists have all the fun.