Goodluck Jonathan

 I was recently reading about the new President of Nigeria whose parents decided from birth that he was probably going to be an unlucky child, and so they named him “Goodluck Jonathan”. 

How clever, to name your child in such a way that you don’t have to remember to wish him  “Goodluck” everyday !

But what if you do want to wish him extra goodluck. Do you say “Goodluck Goodluck” ? Or what about if you just wanted to call him for tea. How many times has the conversation been


“What for ?”

“Nothing, I am just calling you”

“What for ?”   and so on and so on.

I notice too that Goodluck’s wife is called Patience. How astute again of her parents to realise at birth that their daughter was likely to be a little impetuous. “Will you have some patience Patience!” I hope she is not a nurse “Will your patients show some patience Patience!”

Anyway, when our daughter Tracey has some children I am going to suggest she calls them “Don’tforgettodoyourteeth Susan” and “Don’tanswerback George”

Templetons launch the first Personal Ash Cloud Diffuser

Templetons Hardware is delighted today to announce the launch of the very first Personal Ash Cloud  Diffuser. With Eyjafjallajökull showing no signs of  slowing in its eruption rate, Templetons have stepped forward with their unique invention.

With air travel now in abundance once more and with aeroplanes permitted to travel through higher concentrations of ash, the downforce from the aircrafts will push the ash down to ground level, and those left walking will find themselves in a cloud of ash and in need of the Templeton’s Personal Ash Cloud Diffuser.

Many disappointed travellers have recently arrived back in the UK and realised that without Templeton’s Personal Ash Cloud Diffuser they face time on the street facing into the ash cloud that their own aircraft could have forced down to ground level. One traveller, Michelle Brodderidge, was distraught when she realised that she had no answer to the ash cloud. “I had no idea” she said.”If only Templetons had a store here in Luton, I would be able to travel home safely.”

Sadly Michelle and others alike faced the only option of joining the terminally long queues at the nearest vendor. Speaking on behalf of Templetons Hardware, owner Derek Templeton said “This is a unique opportunity to diffuse the ash cloud as it heads towards you. The design is deliberately similar to the personal fan many use in warm weather and that’s the genius of the idea. It is something easy to use.”  Derek went on to add “We anticipate continued huge demand for the Personal Ash Cloud Diffuser and have taken on an extra member of staff in our Sprodlington shop.” The Personal Ash Cloud Diffuser is available for£19.99, and with only one store in Sprodlington, Derek says he is keen to hear from other retailers who may be able to sell his invention.

The Junior Apprentice

Wendy and I watched The Junior Apprentice programme on television the other evening and Wendy remarked on how none of them would last two minutes in Sprodlington.

“Too true Wendy” I said and reminded her of the last time Mike Harper and the boys at Mike Harper Autos had taken on an apprentice and how he had been sent to visit my shop.

“Good morning Mr Templeton” said the young man after waiting for the bell above the door to stop clanking.

“Mike Harper has sent me up for a tin of tartan paint and a long “”weight””  please.” It’s the same gag every time with Mike, and its up to me to decide how long the long “weight” is. But this time I decided that I would take pity on the young man. Perhaps he would have a little “smooch” or whatever the word is that Sir Alan uses.

“Young man” I said ” There are  no  long weights sold in the UK anymore.” He looked a little concerned. “And I am right out of tartan paint. The problem is that the Euro zone have introduced Rules Regulations and Restrictions” I continued, making sure I emphasised the “R’s” with that rolly R thing that public speakers do (or probably those ghastly people on The Junior Apprentice in 10 years time.)

“But what shall I tell Mr Harper?” questioned the young lad, looking even more concerned.

“Simple!” said I, thinking I was in insurance comparison advert for a moment. “Just walk up to Mr Harper and say “”Euro R’s”

I hope he didn’t get the sack.

Well how fortunate was that.

Well, how lucky was that ! 

If  I hadn’t had so much T Cut metallic Colour restorer in stock for those poor residents of Sprodlington whose cars were scratched and vandalised by those unidentified hoodies, I couldn’t have helped selling them a solution.

Needless to say, we have now sold out, so  Wendy has now ordered more stock;  but we have made sure we have only ordered our usual case of six rather than thirty she ordered by mistake last time

Vandals, blooming vandals

It says something about the world in which we live when vandalism hits the small market town of Sprodlington.

The talk in the town yesterday, in what can fortunately be described as a busier day than usual in my shop, was of a riot of vandalism sometime between 12am and 6am the previous night. That’s the time when I am definitely asleep.

It appears as though our little market town was visited by some older looking hoodies who took to scratching some of the local residents’ cars. In a bizarre form of “tagging” (I think that’s the term) these vandals only scratched cars of the mid blue colour range. I understand that in total thirty cars were scratched.

What is the world coming to ?

Trade discounts

When Carl the Fishmonger opened his new shop three doors down from mine in Market Place, Sprodlington, I was quick to pop in and give him a welcome “Hello”

Wendy had reminded me that we had nothing in for tea and so having introduced myself as Derek Templeton from Templeton’s Hardware, I ordered some nice fresh cod from my new acquaintance Carl from his new shop “Fother’s Plaice” (how clever to play on words like that Wendy had said)

I thought I’d mention to Carl the idea of a “Traders’ Discount” as he wrapped my cod on the scales.

“Perhaps a mutual 25% discount for traders in Market Place?” I suggested. “I could always recommend this shop to my local and regular customers.” Carl agreed and at that stage I decided to change my order from cod to monkfish. He didn’t seem too upset at having to unwrap the cod and start again.

A couple of days later, Carl came to my shop and looked up as the clunky door bell announced his arrival.

” I need a couple of shelving brackets please Derek.” he said.

” You’re lucky” said I. “I have a great linksave offer with T Cut Metallic Colour Restorer” I probed tentatively.

“I’m just fine with the shelving brackets today thanks” said Carl showing me a puzzled look for the first time.”But I thought I’d support a fellow Market Place trader!”

I quickly remembered the 25% discount he had given me on the recent purchase of monkfish. In truth I panicked a little as I realised that I wouldn’t be quick enough to work out how to add 15% to the price before taking 25% off.

“The thing is” I stumbled, “I’m afraid I can only give you a 10% discount. My margins are lower than your fish, and I’ve had a really quiet week.” I lied. ” I guess most of my customers must have been visiting your shop instead. I’m sure you understand.”

I’m sure he didn’t.

You can’t trust anyone

Recently my wife Wendy was covering in the shop whilst I was out and she accepted a delivery from the wholesaler for a case of thirty T Cut Metallic Colour Restorer. She then opened the case and put some out on the shelf removing my chance to send them back. I only ever order six at a time.

Yes, technically on this occasion, I may have ticked the wrong box on the wholesaler’s order form, but that’s a result of them needlessly changing their brochure design to incorporate more special offers and manufacturers’ adverts. But, even if I take into consideration that the manufacturers at Tetrosyl Limited, Bury have clearly worked hard to make the use of their product “Now even easier”, I can’t see how I am going to sell thirty until 2013.

Incidentally, how can a car polish be “Now even easier” ? You put it on a cloth; then on your car; leave it and then wipe it off ! I also note that on the back of the thirty bottles I now have in stock it says “Do not apply to rusty or freshly painted surfaces.” Has anyone seriously ever tried to polish rust or fresh paint?

Mrs Griffiths’ Gate Latch

Last night on the way home from a rather late stay at The Cross Keys, where I shuffled a few hands of dominoes with the local history teacher Colin; fish monger Carl; and Wade the crop sprayer, I saw Mrs Griffiths’ gate latch hanging off her side gate. Naturally I stopped to take a look, but found it rather difficult to focus following a few tall glasses of World Top. It came off in my hand, so I quickly left it on the floor and continued home.

This morning in my very own Templeton’s hardware store, the clanking bell at the top of the door which either announces the arrival of a customer or a gust of wind (perhaps from the customer) sounded and in walked Mrs Griffiths clutching the broken gate lock.

“The lock on my side gate has broken.” she said.

“I know.” I replied and quickly bluffed “I can see it in your hand.”

“I don’t know how that happened.” she continued, but able now to look at me in my rather bloodshot eyes for the first time.

“Just old and weathered I expect. Can I help you with a new one ?”

And so I managed to reap the rewards from my slight accident and £7.95 sat warming itself in my till.