A squashed Beetle


WATCHING the tellybox last night a new advert appeared that seems designed to terrify idiots into buying a new type of soap dispenser. Magically it senses when a hand is waiting and dollops soap onto it without having to press a pump. Apparently bacteria yes that’s right bacteria lurk on the pump of a regular dispenser! Surely once the pump’s been pressed the hands are washed clean anyway! Another cynical ploy dressed as a health warning to try and part us from our hard earned cash.

Last issue I suggested people should think more about limiting their fuel use before taking the car out for a run. Last weekend and in more depth The Sunday Times ran a story about the possibility of petrol rationing being reintroduced as fuel stocks start to fall. In the UK a 60 page all-party government report was issued recently which acknowledged oil production has passed its peak and personal energy quotas will have to be put in place ‘to radically and rapidly restructure our society’ to deal ‘with the reality of diminishing access to energy!’

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Tradeable energy quotas or TEQs would be issued annually to every adult in the UK. A litre of petrol for instance would be worth 2.3 units and a Kilowatt hour of electricity would be 0.2 units. These units would total 40 per cent of Britain’s annual energy use with the rest allocated to businesses, industry and government. With carbon reduction targets in place each year these allocations would decrease.

With a new series of Top Gear back on telly the likes of Jeremy Clarkson will no doubt scoff at the idea of fuel rationing as fuel stocks dwindle. This way however anyone could drive whatever they want as long as they have the dosh to buy other peoples unused TEQs.

I watched the latest Top Gear at the weekend and not for the first time cringed as a perfectly good VW Beatle was obliterated on landing in the desert after first being hoisted a mile high by helicopter and then dropped.

Top Gear is so bloomin watchable because at the same time as often being politically incorrect it’s zany and incredibly funny. If only the producers used the programme sometimes to actually champion environmental issues rather than rubbish them.

I doff my hat to that lovely man Michel Roux and Service his excellent new telly series. Young people with almost no catering experience are thrown each week into the most demanding of service positions with the lure of two scholarships to be won. I hope the series will go some way to showing people that the hospitality industry’s a highly skilled and professional business to be in and is also great fun. Michels’ sidekick Fred has superb motivational skills and comes across as a great educator. Freds’ analogy of a restaurant being a ‘magic factory’ making ‘happy customers’ is a saying eateries everywhere should adopt as their mission statement.

It is interesting how different bar businesses react to slowing demand.

The new bar in Arboleas El Campillo not only offers free Wi-Fi but will also lend a laptop to anyone that needs to check emails whilst having a drink. Great food and well worth a visit if in Arboleas. In Bedar Bar El Empalme has free Wi-Fi, the tapas are excellent, the steaks delicious and again no charge for plugging in a laptop.



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