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Thursday, June 25, 2015

There's no privacy in the ice cream business, is there?

The other day we were walking along the sea front of a small town on the Northumbrian coast. My brother-in-law, an inveterate taker of photographs, snapped one of an ice cream van. "Did you just take a photograph?" demanded a woman's voice from inside the van. He went over and spoke to her. It turned out that she objected to having her picture taken. "This is my place of work. You wouldn't like it if I came into your place of work and took a photograph of you, would you?" My brother in law walked away, shaking his head.

People are, of course, entitled to a reasonable degree of privacy but every aspect of daily life involves some sort of trade-off between publicity and confidentaility. People in ice cream vans should know this better than most. After all, they occupy an almost unique place in British life. if you carry your produce into a public place in an attractively-painted vehicle covered in slogans describing that product and imploring any passer-by to stop you and try it, and furthermore if you equip said vehicle with electronic chimes to ensure that nobody in the immediate area can remain unaware of your presence, you could fairly be said to be not so much a privacy-seeking citizen as the occupant of an actual advertisement on wheels and you are therefore entitled to the same freedom from public scrutiny as a bloke wandering up and down Oxford Street carrying a placard pointing out that the end of the world is nigh. Or a town crier.  None.

Now give me a ninety-nine. Unless, that is, you don't wish to be disturbed.

8 comments:

  1. Sounds like excellent Peter Kay material .

    Also : "I've got 99 problems and my pitch ain't one"

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  2. I find your comments flakey. I'll get my coat.

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  3. David - off topic but I was just listening to your show with Johnnie Walker and you said you didn't get on that well with Laura Nyro? Have you ever listened to the album she did with Labelle called 'Gonna Take a Miracle' which incidentally came out in 1971? A beautiful album - soulful, understated and lovely.

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  4. Yes, I know that record, Paul. I've had it since 1971. Prefer the Labelle bit to the Laura Nyro part.

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  5. Laura's voice can be harsh, I reckon. That sharp, piercing wail. Patti Labelle sounds warmer and less in-yer-face (ironic, given she's a church belter herself...)

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  6. I like her mostly but she can go from beautiful to fingernails on a blackboard very quickly

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  7. You don't know you're born - if that had been Jet Black, drummer for the Stranglers and former ice-cream baron, you'd have been locked in the boot of a car, driven onto a ferry bound for somewhere in Scandinavia and then taken out, beaten up, relieved of your roll of film, had your camera smashed, challenged to a game of cricket and then left to find our own way home in nothing but your underpants. According to what I've read on That Internet. Which means it must be true... What was the question again..?

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  8. Operative claiming benefits?

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