Sunday, 3 July 2011


The ego has landed!

At one time the UK version of The Apprentice  was seen as a serious insight into the young entrepreneurs and emerging business-winning talent competing to secure a place in Alan Sugar’s multi-million pound empire. These days - let’s face it - it’s less a vehicle for unearthing such talent and more a platform for the man himself. A forum for his prejudices and put-downs. He’s the star of this show. ’S’walan ’ as he once was - now Baron Sugar of Clapton - reminds us week after week how he started out at the age of 16 (or was it 18?, maybe he was only 9!) knocking out car aerials from the back of his van. Beatification beckons – doubt it though – he’s Jewish...

Another aspect - slightly more disturbing - to emerge in more recent series (this is the 7th) is the downright wacky nature and absolute barminess of some of the contestants who are in the “process”. None more so than Susan Ma - still only 21 years of age – her first ever job was working on a market stall selling skin care products which she has now turned into a lucrative business. On that front she is to be admired. But it is her apparent naiveté - bordering on the stupid - that sets her apart from the other candidates. On a task to sell English designed products to the French, Susan admitted she knew little about France and the French people, but this did not stop her from asking the most bizarre questions concerning our neighbours across the Channel. Questions such as:-

Are the French very fond of their children?”

Are the French eco-friendly?” and

Do a lot of people drive in France?”

When the stunned silence yielded no answers to her questions – she again affirmed she knew nothing about the French, France or its culture by way of explanation. Clearly!

Let’s consider her last question!

France has a proud history in motor car manufacture at least since 1919 with companies such as Citroën, Renault and Peugeot. The country is the home to the 24 Heures du Mans race, the Grand Prix in Monaco (not strictly speaking in France – but pedantry isn’t my suit!) and the Paris Motor Show. You can’t get across the L’Arc de Triomphe roundabout intersection on the same tank of petrol – it’s that damned busy! The French like to drive too much – Susan!

Here is the link to Miss Ma’s bizarre thoughts on those mythical French (The Apprentice – series #7):


Interesting fact - The Jack Russell is a breed of dog associated with the Rev. John Russell in the 19th century and not the England cricketer of the same name.

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