Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Christmas Pish Posh

Apologies darlings, we have been so caught up in Christmas pursuits here at the Gazette-ette office (read: testing the eggnog and bossing the help around) that we have been quite unable to write anything at all. Tis horrifying we know but the prospect of having the whole of Lord Primcoque's family descending willy nilly is enough to have one reaching for one's "little helpers".
However, one must carry on, after all those reindeer sweater's won't knit themselves. Off we go then, pip pip!

Kindest Regards,

Lady Penelope Primcoque

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Keeping up with the (Austere) Times

As, my dears, one is sure you are all aware – having come from families that can afford to educate you as proper ladies – the world is slowly clawing its way out of the economic abyss into which it was spectacularly thrown by a bunch of upstart lower-class bankers who, never having seen money before, indulged themselves in an orgy of borrowing much like the ill-bred scum monkeys that they are. Ahem, so, carrying on one must learn to cope in these new austere times by being seen to comply with the new propriety. One of the key ways in which one can keep up appearances is to cultivate an Austerity Garden. Due to the expense of flying in one’s vegetables from the colonies in the South of the Americas via private jet – fuel prices these days being nothing short of high-sea robbery – one is now expected to grow one’s own produce in order for one’s private chef to continue with an acceptable Cordon Bleu menu.

However, before you go off like a frog in a sock and order the gardener to begin digging please note: one is expected to contribute to one’s own garden. Do not swoon, dear ladies there are plenty of ways in which to appear to plough one’s own furrow without breaking into a most unladylike bout of sweat – a lady never sweats. The first step is to order some tomes on gardening – have one’s husband’s man fetch some for you and – prior to artfully arranging them on one’s coffee table for all to see – have the maid dirty her hands in the garden and flip through the pages in order to create an air of authenticity with a range of grubby finger marks.

Secondly, order yourself some khaki pantaloons, a bisque coloured blouson and a jade-hued knit with coordinating headscarf. You shall also require a pair of kid-skin gloves – in a pale shade so as to show off the dirt – to prevent oneself from developing a nasty servant-like tanning of the delicate skin on one’s hands. Thirdly, one’s aim is to be seen by the neighbours parading around the yard in one’s outfit with purpose, a trowel clasped firmly in one hand and a watering can in the other. Obviously one will not actually be performing any gardening so it is imperative that one not forget to hire a group of immigrants to toil through the night and actually plant one’s garden with all manner of vegetables and fruits, lest someone begin to question your gardening skills when no vegetables are to be seen.

Now, in the horrifying event that one’s neighbour is displaying greener thumbs than you, we here at the Gazette-ette find that a swift application of weed killer – employed under the cover of darkness – will rapidly bring about your neighbour's demise and catapult you to the forefront of the ‘friendly’ neighbourhood Austerity Garden rivalry. And we won’t be having any of that namby pamby pish posh about having the most ‘green’ household not being a fight to the proverbial death – if it weren’t so, what would there be for the gauche, latte-sipping hoi polloi to boast about whilst shovelling faux-organic gloop into their lardy brats. One would be forgiven for thinking we’d been invaded by the Spanish.

Happy Austerity Gardening my dears!

Pip Pip.

Audrey Feathersnatch

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Lady and the Tram(p)

Vivienne Claybottom’s handy guide to public transport.

While one may look upon public transport as shuttles for commoners, smelly canisters of steel on wheels disastrously decorated with the dirt of the masses and the urine of the homeless, it is still not entirely correct to thumb one’s nose. Being conscious of the need for a greener planet is the second most noble thing behind knowing how to slap the help without leaving a mark, so with this guide to public transport, it might be time to lose the chauffeur and make the train, tram or bus your first stop on the way to environmental sainthood (because who wants to stand in line to get into heaven?)

Buying a ticket:

You will need a ticket to embark on public transport. To pay to have one’s face hurtled into the armpit of a malodorous commoner at the speed of a North African cheetah might seem odd, but without a license to travel you’re no better than a common criminal, or the Dutch.

Whenever possible, purchase your ticket from the attendant located behind the ticket window. One cannot put a price on human interaction, even if said human winks while handing you your change. Additionally, by going to the ticket window you’ll avoid having to touch the buttons on the automated machines, which as we all know, are besmutted by the fingers of the poor, the wretched, and those who don’t know how to speak English.

Try to have the correct change ready and not jingle-jangle through your coin purse, an action which broadcasts an opera of poverty. While paying a fare with a large note is sometimes problematic, it is yards more dignified and thus should always be attempted, even at peak hour. Just don’t get too flashy about it, or your ticket money will certainly be accepted – by a man in a beanie holding you at knifepoint.

Note: it is not customary to tip the ticket salesperson.


When walking down the stairs to your train platform, keep your chin high and your lady cave shielded from the view of those looking upwards with smutty intent. As you will certainly have an audience (you gorgeous creature) it is helpful to pretend you are descending the staircase of a grand ball, attended by the likes of princes, business magnates and Colin Firth – from the days when he was sexually ripe, of course. However, as public handrails are hot spots for the transmission of HIV and dyslexia, one should stay on the safe side and keep one’s hands clasped just below the sternum, or fiercely over one’s purse.

Bins have long been absent from train platforms, meaning the commuters will have nothing to scrounge through and might attempt a dialogue. No matter what form the transport – train, bus or tram – try not to be drawn into conversation. If somebody asks you for the time, it’s likely they are trying to steal your watch, so it’s best to either play deaf or alert security by shouting ‘rape’ at the top of one’s lungs.

When the transport arrives, ever so gently punch your way to the front and try to get on first, without being coddy-fondled by ham-fisted brutes or poked in the back of the legs by the walking frames of the elderly. Once onboard, scan the area for a seat devoid of chewing gum, wet patches or a person of the orient, lay out a kerchief and sit yourself down. Read a book to demonstrate your literacy.

It is inevitable that, on occasion, you will have to stand when no seats are available and no gentlemen are present to proffer their seats, only smelly bearded masturbators who remain sitting on their hindquarters wearing shirts made of 90% polyester and 10% cheeseburger. In the event of a standing commute, hold onto a handle or pole below the level of the waist with one hand, and keep the muscles in the face relaxed. Too often have I seen young ladies gripping an overhead pole with both hands, swinging about the carriage like boobtubed orang-utans, their faces distorted into a silent scream as if they’ve just received word that Supre has discontinued the Jegging.

Over the duration of the commute, if a gentleman is present and makes flirtatious eye contact, the first thing one must consider is what route one is on. If it’s the City or North Shore line, and the man is sporting an immaculate coif and a Windsor knot, subtly return his gaze and allow the flirtation to run its course. If you’re on the Western line, express immediate disinterest by turning back to your book or changing seats or carriages. In either of the scenarios, if you are followed off the bus, train or tram it is best to respond with surprise violence by releasing your 2000-volt pocket taser right into the eye socket.


There’s only one rule when it comes to alighting public transport: get off as quickly as possible and head straight to a lavatory to wash your hands. When travelling to meet somebody or attend an appointment, walk around the block so as to appear to have come from the opposite direction of the bus stop or the station. During the meeting, constantly complain about the fact that your chauffeur smells of a bean-burrito, to quell any doubts about how you arrived today.

With this travel guide in mind, you can rest easy about doing your part for the planet. Who knows, you might even find yourself touched by the honest day-to-day struggle of the working underclass. In which case, simply splash some holy water on the affected area and head to the Intercontinental for brunch.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Note on Grooming

Ladies, we have a problem. Increasingly, we here at the Gazette-ette have been noticing a horrifying trend among young ladies of (supposed) class: under-groomed women taking to the street in un-coiffed droves! Clad in the so-called ‘track-pant’ these slovenly dames are depressingly uncouth and the mere sight of them is enough to reduce one to such a state as to require the application of a cold compress to one’s forehead and a good lie down. Now, one does not expect everyone to be as well groomed as oneself – I am a charitable soul and the first to acknowledge that the abject perfection of these curls really is beyond the reach of most ladies. However! One does expect a lady to brush her hair and apply some semblance of makeup, even an simple application of that dratted sticky gunge that young ladies of ill-breeding refer to as ‘lip gloss’ would be acceptable at this point. 

Perhaps, in order to combat such lack of propriety, it would be appropriate to call upon the wisdom of those greater than I, so I shall refer you, my dears, to the melodious words of one Coco Chanel whom, despite being of the dreaded Nouveau Riche and French to boot, has managed to have some of said pearls of wisdom recorded for posterity (damned if I know how she did it too, other than employing the rather conceited effect of having a biographer follow her about the place):

“I don't understand how a woman can leave the house without fixing herself up a little - if only out of politeness. And then, you never know, maybe that's the day she has a date with destiny. And it's best to be as pretty as possible for destiny.”

And in desperate times such as these it is best to disregard the words of her Nouveau Riche compatriot from the colonies, Eleanor Roosevelt (after all, the woman did marry her cousin – and they’re not even royalty!)

"No matter how plain a woman may be if truth & loyalty are stamped upon her face all will be attracted to her."

Toodle Pip Ladies!

Ms Delores Mantooth

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Welcome to the Gazette-ette

Welcome ladies to the inaugural communication of the Gazette-ette. I am Lady Penelope Primcoque, of the Derbyshire Primcoques, and it is my great pleasure to introduce this most noble publication. The Gazette-ette is dedicated to the dignified cause of providing a guide to those ladies who have become lost in the maze of modern life and in so doing have lost sight of propriety, manners and decorum. For without proper etiquette one can be regarded as no better than the Huns that populate the continent and whom delight in disregarding proper tea drinking etiquette and seek to degrade the very fibre of our society!

Ahem, so with great fanfare may I present to you, our dear readers, the editorial team. All of whom are as dedicated as myself to the guiding of ladies through the ocean of Jap mines that modern life has become:


 Lady Penelope Primcoque - LITERATURE AND CULTURE

Audrey Feathersnatch - SULTRY KITCHEN MASTER

Vivienne Claybottom - THE LADY ADVENTURER

 Lady Henrietta Wrinkleblouse-Smythe - OPERA & THE ARTS

 Ms Delores Mantooth (pictured left, with close friend Marilyn) - FASHION & BEAUTY

So in this, our first post, it is only prudent for one to draw attention to the grave abuse of all that is proper, something which threatens the holy office of the Monarchy and brings impending doom to the Empire. Yes, I speak of the momentous occasion that occurred today when Prince Charles announced the engagement of his first born and heir to one Katherine Middleton. That is correct, your monocle has not fogged. Her family name is Middleton. One may as well just call oneself “Miss Mary Plainjane”. The overwhelming horreur (pardon my French) at this pronouncement was so great as to cause one to inhale a large portion of hot mustard from one’s morning toast and much undignified eye-watering did ensue. So much so that the maid believed I had teared up with joy. Joy? Really, how crude. I fired her on the spot for such impertinence. One really cannot get good help these days. No matter, Lord Primcoque’s man is on the job of unearthing us a decent maid – not easy in this town. Nevertheless, back to the event at hand. Whilst one can only be pleased that the time-honoured Royal tradition of marrying one’s sister has fallen by the wayside, the introduction of common blood really has gotten out of control. Really, there is nothing to be done except to wish the happy couple a quick car chase in a narrow tunnel, for us five at The Gazette-ette feel we have been somewhat overlooked as royal brides and we’re not willing to lower the bar for that carrot Harry, regardless of the male pattern balding that William has begun to show.

Middleton indeed.

Until next time, au revoir!

Lady Penelope Primcoque