’I’d like it to be a quiet affair.’ It’s not often you hear such
sentiments in the media sales world - and when you do, the speaker is
more likely to be plotting a clandestine shag with the blonde from
marketing than referring to his birthday.
But News International (Manchester) sales executive Darren Rapley was
hell-bent on keeping his 30th quiet. A bit of a lad about town, he was
rather embarrassed about reaching the grand 3-0.
His colleagues had other ideas and booked an admobile to trail him on
the day in question. Darren drives a soft-top VW Beetle, wears Prada and
Versace, and draws admiring looks from the under-21s. Hotcakes wonders
if they’ll see him in the same light, now he’s been stalked by a van
with a banner declaring his ripe old age.
Mike Potter, who sits atop the Redwood contract publishing empire, has
just turned 50. You might expect a successful businessman like Potter -
who now looks more like Clive Sinclair than a Glastonbury regular - to
pick a posh London restaurant for the celebration. But, in a move that
put the pot back into Potter, the Redwood chief took a bunch of friends
to Morocco.’Choo choo! It’s all aboard the Marrakesh Express,’ said a
senior agency source.
’The thing about Morocco, right, is it opens the doors to perception,’
said one media owner. ’We had a brilliant idea for a new publishing
venture and I wrote it down ... it’s just a shame I can’t understand a
word of it now.’
Many publishers encourage a bit of soul searching from their staff.
But last week Quantum Publishing decided to go for some bag searching
instead. One of their Media Week sales team was leaving to join
Hotcakes’ own publication.
Suspecting foul play, they called him into an office, on the day of his
departure, to search his bag. It’s not clear whether they were looking
for the empty matchbox, the three salt cellars (it’s a long story) or
the brown-stained blanket.