Wednesday, 16 March 2011


Well, I feel like my little blog has been slightly neglected of late. So I thought I'd haul it out of the undergrowth, shake off all the dead leaves, give it a polish and proudly show it off like a mad tramp with a trinket.

Recently, I've been feeling worried about a lot of things. Japan, nuclear reactors, Libya, the recession... and my accent. To be completely honest, mainly about my accent. You see, I had a horrible experience with a very drunk, Corpulent Banker in the Groucho club. Namely ... h... he was MEAN about my accent. (Thankfully afterwards he was presented with the drinks bill and almost had a heart attack).  But I had to conclude that after three years in the North, I sound like an extra on Byker Grove. I've become one of them... I mean, us. A northerner.

Receptionists are worst. They are, I find, difficult creatures at the best of times. Being either overbearing, bullying and officious, or arch, dismissive, and with a thousand yard stare that could be used in a knife-throwing act. But LONDON receptionists, when you have a northern accent? Forget it. There's one particular (prestigious) place I HAVE to call. The receptionist hears my accent and always seems to assume that I'm making unsolicited advances to the firm in question, or I've got the wrong number for social services. 

I amused myself earlier with an imaginary receptionist-interview at the firm in question...

- ‘Now then Quentin, terrific interview, you’re more than qualified for the job, but I must ask you one final question. It’s terribly important. Can you non-verbally convey blistering contempt to anyone who grew up North of the Watford Gap? Can you?’

- ‘Yes sir, I can. I saw a northerner on the street once. Mummy set him on fire.’

- ‘Jolly good old boy! We’ve imported someone from Liverpool especially for this part of the interview. Would you care to give a demonstration? Don’t be afraid - it doesn’t have feelings.’

*Quentin sneers, impressively*

- ‘I say, good show! You start on Monday. You may release the northerner back into the wild. We only shoot them on Tuesdays, on Lord Offingham’s estate. Ruddy good sport. Care for a truffle?'

...And that's how those interviews go. Really. I'M SURE OF IT.

 Anyway, must dash - I'm off to Italy at the end of this month, (for the international bookfair in Bologna). Very exciting. I'll post up photos. Hopefully there won't be any receptionists. Toodle pip!


  1. i'm sure everything's okay with your accent! don't even think of it :) but how exciting, that you're going to Bologna book fair!!! I heard there's an exhibition there too? i was thinking of sending some works there!

  2. Oh yes Daria you should definitely send some work there! (It's scarily immense though, by all accounts). There's the BolognaRagazzi illustration award. And I don't deserve lovely friends like you - worrying about my stupid accent at a time like this!

  3. Be proud of that accent, woman! We've worked hard for it! If you start talking like Quentin I'm not drinking beer with you anymore.

  4. Lou! Where the bejeebers are you in the world at the moment? TELL me you're free for beer drinking!

  5. Ha ha! That's priceless! the imaginary interview, I mean, not the bit about laughing at you. That's despicable.

    Where I live, even London is many miles north. Heck, there are even some Frenchmen more Northern than I am:)

    Don't let the pasty-faced smog-breathers get you down!

    Have fun in Bologna.

  6. Ooh, he was a HORRIBLE human being. It happened ages ago, and I've been feeling rubbish about it ever since. (Am hoping blogging about it was cathartic, and it can now be forgotten about).

    I...I'm not even sure I should be talking to someone as Southern as you! *looks around, worriedly* don't I need some sort of permit or something? ;)

    Thanks! re: Bologna :D

  7. Still over here, dude. Me and my accent are posted to the North East mid April. Can I get a 'HEEEEEYYYYYY'. Come over and drink German beer. It's stronger.

  8. Yaaaaaay! I'd love to come over and drink German beer.

  9. errr... Faye, I don't even think you really have 'an accent.' At least I never notice it. I'm inclined to think that sort of receptionist is sniffy to everyone.... unless you're the OTHER Quentin, of course!

  10. You mean...receptionists are just sniffy indiscriminately?