Part one: the winter weather
“Mi mama she-a say to me, Roberto, in the snowy weather , always weara the scaaaaarf datta way you never getta caughta in the colda - not lika that Sparky fella.”
Sir Alex Ferguson
““I use ter laik the snow. Now I canna stand it. All that white reminds me of Leeeeds fuckin' United: it's nae guid.”
That Mancini scarf
The best picture we could find for the 'Mind your language' paragraph above of Roberto Mancini was when he was at Inter Milan. Look at the scarf, think of how he wears his City scarf. Sleuth thinks he has simple tactic for showing fans his loyality and their colours. Clever lad our Roberto.
Two surprise new restaurants for the city
Two restaurants are set to arrive in the city centre. One is on Church Street, in the Light Apartment block, where the Colisseum shopping arcade was, and will be called Bulb. The other is in the old Square Albert pub next to Tampopo in Albert Square and will be called Bla Bla. The food style in both is surprising. It will be Lithuanian with Indonesian elements and a Chilean twist. Oh no, sorry, Sleuth has misread that. They're both going to be...go on, guess...go on? Yep they're both going to be Italian. Let's hope they are as 'authentic' as they promise because the city is going to explode in a greasy mess of pesto and pasta if we're not careful.
Jazz goes home in new club
A good thing about the Bla Bla restaurant mentioned above is that the ground floor will be an Italian restaurant but downstairs will be the Bla Bla Jazz Club. Given there's bugger all in the way of live music in the area this is definitely a good thing. Sleuth also knows how desperate visitors to the city get for a venue providing music that isn't aimed at 21 year olds - and Band on the Wall can be a long walk. It's got a great location close to the convention areas and close to lots of hotels too. There's a happy echo of the past as well, in that the venue used to be the Kardomah in the fifties and had live music then, and is round the corner from the site of the Oasis Club, orginally a jazz club, which then became the main beat music venue featuring young bands such as the Hollies. The latter used to have all-night sessions, Bla Bla has applied for a 6am licence. What goes around....
Snow business becomes no business
Sleuth's biggest irony of the frozen week was Chill Factore, the indoor ski and winter sports centre close to the Trafford Centre. After Monday's heavy snowfalls it was closed on Tuesday - because of the snow.
School's catch 22 at minus 12
Serious one this. Sleuth has a friend who's a principal of a school in Manchester. She's very dedicated. She opened the school on Thursday but only half the pupils came in. All parents should have checked with the school or on the radio and brought their kids along. So the principal was left with a dilemma. To declare that all the absent pupils had an 'unauthorised absence' because of the notices sent out, or say they had an 'authorised absence' because of the weather. But if she did the former Oftsed would tear a strip off her during an inspection about attendance levels and the school may go into special measures: do the latter and those who had bothered to turn-up could easily claim that this was unfair and they might as well have taken the day off. More trouble. Given her dedication this was unnecessary pressure. Maybe the truth is that we don't need Ofsted, another burdensome branch of the targetocracy. Maybe we go back to trusting headteachers: there are other less costly, more sensible ways of measuring a school's merit aside from this bureaucratic set of middle-men and women. Then Sleuth's friend could have made the decision on commonsense grounds without that needless worry.
The beating of legal wings
Sleuth got this message from The Law Society. 'Don’t slip up on your snow-related personal injury claim says Law Society. Treacherous pavements at this time of year usually lead to more accidents - and more claims. The Law Society reminds consumers they can go straight to a specialist solicitor if they want advice on whether they should claim. Many solicitors will offer a free initial consultation and if you decide to pursue a claim may offer a no-win no-fee agreement.' Sleuth can hear the beating of wings: here come the vultures looking to screw local councils and the local taxpayer. Seems even vultures like snow.
Sleuth's most exciting press release of the week
Sleuth got a frantic looking email on Thursday with the header: 'Important Notice'. Sleuth frantically opened it. The first line read: 'Manchester. 7th January 2010. HSS Hire, the award-winning tool and equipment hire company, has released its 2010 Tool and Equipment Hire Guide'. Oh the sheer, unbridled joy.
Sleuth favourite business name of the week
A Confidential writer is looking into getting an interview with a Mancunian male escort from an escort agency - to see how it all works. The best name we've come across yet for an agency is 'Extra Pillow'. You can go for a meal with the lad or have him stay the whole night. Sleuth wonders which aspect of the service the title of the business refers to.
Sleuth's lies to tell tourists part one
Rats in Castlefield are twice as big as normal because they live off fast food washed down the Rochdale Canal from the Village and Piccadilly. All the donner kebabs they've eaten lead them to squeak in Pakistani accents.
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