Monday, 22 October 2007

Sleeping on the job

How silent does a silent partner have to be? Be honest now, you stick a couple of hundred grand into some hare-brained restaurant scheme and you want a bit more than a drinks tab and a fifty-fifty chance of flogging it to Derek Lilley when he next comes out of retirement. You want cashflow, a full house every night and some kind of say in what the menu looks like.

In the last couple of months I’ve passed on a couple of these so-called investment opportunities in the leisure business. You basically have to stick a load of dosh in a pot marked “funny money” and think of it as an extended lads trip to Puerto Banus. You have a laugh along the way, fair enough, but don’t expect to come out with much. If you do, it’s bonus time.

I’ve no idea where Tony “Fordy” Ford and Paul “Johno” Johnson are up to with that Ithaca “nite club” gaff, except they ended up falling out with the Catholic Church next door. There can only be one winner when you take on the Pope, lads. Haven’t you read the da Vinci Code?

My old mate Steve “Jacko” Jackson has stuck a few quid into this new pub in Preston – Cocktail Factory - which I’m told is “a new concept in nightlife for Preston’s more discerning socialite!” With a line like that it’s got to be a winner. Give Jacko his due, he sure knows how to mix business and pleasure.

Now, there’s been a lot of rubbish been talked about what went down at the Insider 42 Under 42 dinner last month where a pitching contest got a bit tetchy. What do you expect when you mix up clever lads with bottles of Pinot Grigio? You’re bound to get some fireworks. Some of the anti-Manc banter went a bit far, but the guilty parties are making amends by joining Greg Davis on his quest to build a boxing club in Wythenshawe with a charity “white collar fight night”. You wouldn’t fancy stepping into the ring with Greg, who used to be a bouncer at the Hacienda, but I hear that Mike Perls “of wisdom” is having a go and I reckon I could do him, easy. They say little fellahs get nasty, but he’ll be off the pace and knackered chasing round after all them kids he’s been siring.

Finally, I’ve piled in with Kenni James – great lad, by the way - on his new radio station, Tameside Radio – 103.6 FM. To be fair I assumed it was down London way, but it turns out you pick up a signal in Alderley on a windy day. He plays Lady In Red for Mrs C every morning, just as she’s getting on the rowing machine, which keeps her happy. Funny lad, Kenni. I can never really tell what he’s saying, but on the radio he’s even better than the legend that is DLT, clear as a bell. Anyway, I won’t be such a silent partner after all, he wants me to be the “voice of business” on the pre-breakfast show. Wey, hey, Take it to the (Staly) Bridge.

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