Trench Coat: An item of COVID Necessity

The feeling of fear immediately wells up inside you as you slowly open your long forgotten wardrobe door and contemplate what you will wear when you are finally allowed to return to the office following months of forced COVID-19 lockdown. Will any items of clothing in your extensive array of expensive corporate attire manage to contain your newly acquired casual and carefree body shape after weeks of continual psychological induced snacking?

Relax, as there is one item of clothing that every corporate professional must have in their possession that will protect your emotional esteem and sanity. It’s colloquially known as the Trench Coat, but for you, it will be your must-have body shape saviour and mental wellbeing protector.

Many of us know the Trench Coat via the famed Hollywood mystique associated with Humphrey Bogart who wore this mighty coat complete with a stylish Fedora peak brimmed hat. But, do we remember what he wore under his coat? The answer to this question being a definitive no, and why should we know, nor care?

Here in lies the charm of the Trench Coat with its tailored double-breasted format that nonchalantly flares to below the wearer’s knee hemline, complete with an array of buttons and impressive shoulder epaulettes.  

The Trench Coat is the perfect visual and environmental protector for any preying eyes that may seek to notice a slighter larger, and somewhat potentially plumper body lying within the constraints of the outer khaki fabric.

Many an office onlooker that does not possess such a grand and imposing coat will be totally oblivious to whatever clothing you may be wearing, or not wearing, under this outer garment, should this clothing be a tad too snug, or surreptitiously popping apart at the seams, or indeed absent. Yes, the Trench Coat will be the only item of clothing that their eyes seek and focus upon.

The Trench Coat is your everywhere coat. It protects your bodily shaped persona whilst you are travelling to and from work, and can even be worn with ease at your desk with the selective unclasping of one or two strategically placed buttons, complete with the mind assuring knowledge that at least one button still remains intact thereby keeping your pudgified body visually and masterly contained.  

For those fortunate employees that do have a Trench Coat unassumingly residing in your wardrobe, relax, as you can happily return to the corporate office with the calming knowledge that your COVID-19 embellished body is fully protected. But alas, if you don’t, now is the time to quickly buy a majestic Trench Coat before many an office worker reading this blog post makes a speedy dash to their local department store to seek and purchase this essential item of clothing.

There’s a Bear in The Office

Office Workers, have you noticed that someone is missing from your home, and has been for quite a few months? 

Yes, whilst you have been subjected to ongoing lockdowns and government edicts where you are commanded to work from home owing to COVID, we, your furry stuffed friends have been having a hoot of a time! And, I suspect that with all the mess you have effortlessly created in your home work environment, you would be none the wiser and have just assumed that somewhere, lying patiently for you under yet another pile of clothes is your well-loved Teddy Bear. Well, you are most definitely wrong!

Truth be told, we went to where you were not, that being your office. What a paradise! We also can’t understand why any human would frequently use that common phrase so often heard when they arrived back home after work, “I’m glad that day is over”! What bollocks! You humans don’t know just how lucky you are, and, unfortunately for you, so now do we. 

Your office is really a large Fun House, one that fully captures the innovative imagination of many a Teddy Bear who is looking for adventure and a creative outlet following many years of sitting stationary in a lonely bedroom or shelf. 

However, we do have some gripes and would like to bring these to your urgent attention.  

Gripe 1: Elevators
The elevator buttons are just too high. As a Teddy Bear with a full six inches of height, I cannot reach any of the buttons, regardless of high I jump. I’ve also tried standing on the shoulders of my fellow Teddy Bears, but to no avail. The result is walking up many flights of stairs, and with time, and friction, our paws will become rather straggly and dirty, and no bears likes that, let me assure you.

Gripe 2: Desks
We Teddy Bears desperately need an access ladder that enables your furry friend to effortlessly scale up to the desk top where we can flick on the computer switch to access Spotify, YouTube and other bear recreational pursuits. And whilst we are talking computers, could you get the IT Department to unblock some sites, the lack of access is really quite unbearable.

Gripe 3: Bathroom
Talking of things being too high, you know what I mean, don’t you!

But there are indeed some positives, so don’t think that we Teddy Bears see the glass as half empty all the time (btw, my apologies to the CEO, his precious crystal glass strategically positioned on his desk was regrettably knocked over in a game of table soccer, however, it was a stunning goal!). 

Positive 1: Desk Chairs
Once you get the momentum up with a spinning desk chair, it’s just like a merry-go-round. However, we found that there is a terminal spin threshold, once above it, no Teddy Bear can hold on and bears can then indeed fly!

Positive 2: Corridors
These are typically carpeted, which are perfect for our paws. They are wide and long. The ideal setting for a game of cricket, carpet bowls, or other games for recreational bear pursuits.

Positive 3: No Humans
Need I say anymore!

So my dear human. There are some good things from COVID, the most important one being that you are at home, and we are in your vacant office. I know that you will return one day, but until then, Teddy Bear life is bliss!

The COVID Nature of Hairs

If you are looking for a brilliant example of innovation, look no further than nature. Yes, this quiet creative achiever just gets on with its corrective business with minimal fuss or pomposity. Just look at all of mankind’s environmental mistakes, of which there are numerous. Thankfully, with time, some of which may unfortunately take many centuries, nature’s extensive tentacles scour through our human mess and methodically put right, what we have destroyed. Nature has been man’s environmental savior since the beginning or time. 

These mysterious machinations apply to all that we do and touch, nothing can be hidden from the probing eyes of nature. This will ultimately apply to the disastrous effect of COVID which has forced us all to modify many aspects of our daily behaviours, one of which being the wearing of the face-mask.

In many countries all around the world, the application of a face-mask has become mandatory, and rightly so for the protection of the individual, and most definitely for the surrounding community. But have you noticed that there is one part of human nature that is already staking a curative claim to the face being perpetually covered? This surreptitious activity appears to be more common in men, and potentially with some women, the later of which may never be acknowledged publicly, but it is quietly growing. The culprit is facial hair and it has made a bold decision to rise forth in rebellion to the face-mask. Hairs no longer want to be hidden; they want to be seen, and nature is facilitating this activity via numerous forms of creativity. 

For those of us that partake in the daily ritual of shaving, you will have noticed that your facial stubble is thicker and more intense. Yes, this has not occurred by accident as your cunning facial hairs have been strategically plotting this burst of growth whilst you innocently slept in total ignorance of the mutiny. 

Have you also noticed an increasing need to trim your nasal hairs? Once more, the creativity of nature yet again in demonstrable action to protect the sanity of your face-mask hidden nose. 

The role of nature is to uncover and correct what mankind tries feebly to hide. It’s good to know that with time, nature will eventually eliminate COVID, but whilst we eagerly wait, make sure that the blades on your shaver are sharp as you will certainly need it for many days to come. 

The Circle of Obsolescence

“Come in, we have a spare seat over there”, said the Office Social Worker (OSW). There was a quiet rustling sound of plastic chairs on the beige vinyl floor tiles as space was quickly made available for their newest member. “Don’t worry, we have all experienced what you are going through, with time, the frustration will pass.” 

The Desk Phone took their allocated seat and sat rather forlornly with its handset’s flexible cable coiled in an unsightly knotted mess dangling with an uncaring manner next to the front right chair leg. One sudden jerk of the chair and the cable would have been quickly sliced in half, but the phone didn’t care.   

They all saw the look of pitiful redundancy on the Desk Phone’s face, some of them had reluctantly joined the Circle of Obsolescence (COO) only recently, others had been frequenting the meetings for decades, but their empathy was genuine and sympathetic.

It was now time for the OSW to start the COO meeting, their role being to facilitate a group discussion where each discarded and forgotten item of corporate office yesteryear would introduce themselves in turn and provide an individual life update.   

The Business Hat gleefully started the discussion. My friends of the COO, take heart as I was recently reading an article in the Italian edition of Vogue, and apparently fashion repeats itself, usually every fifteen years! It’s been a much longer time for me, but I’m convinced that I have already seen signs of a reinvigorated hat-life on many a corporate office worker’s head! I’m so convinced of this impending hat rebirth, that I’ve already given myself a detailed brushing down and sprucing in preparation for the occasion. 

I too have seen signs of this fashion trend, said the Business Shirt with an air of excitement in their voice. The other COO members all leaned forward in their chairs to listen. For many years now, I have been residing in a hermit-like manner in the darkest position in the clothes cupboard fighting off a relentless onslaught of preying silverfish and other unwelcome clothing vermin. As you can all see, I have a buttoned collar, slots for cuff-links, and a pocket strategically positioned over the wearer’s left breast. And guess what, you will never believe it, but I was actually worn yesterday!! The sound of sighs, shock and respect, gleefully permeated the room from all those seated. 

As soon as the Shirt had concluded, a rapid rustling of metal was heard in the base of the chair occupied by the Cufflinks who supported the assertions of the Shirt thereby adding credibility to their positive proclamation. 

This prompted the Neck-Tie, and even the Bow-tie, to quickly unravel in their chairs as they too sensed, and willed, their possible re-participation back into corporate office life. 

However, many other members of the COO continued to have a glum look on their faces as they regrettably knew that their days were numbered as technology, not fashion, had unfortunately passed them by. These chairs were occupied by the Blackberry phone, it’s cousin the Nokia, and now by the matriarchal Desk Phone. Some of them would survive as they resided alone on a cold, dusty, glass shelf in a museum, but for the rest, their longevity seemed doomed.

The eyes of the Business Shirt saw the look of despair on his long sitting technology challenged telephonic friends and tried to cheer them up with the following comment. “My COO friends, don’t despair. Fashion does repeat itself, but it also recycles those that were once deemed good and useful into something even better. Have no doubt, that you will all be reincarnated into an office item that is most worthy of your composition. It will happen to us all….one day.”

The OSW then closed the meeting and wondered, who next from the Corporate Office would attending, and how many chairs would be required? Time would tell.  

Bobble Protection

At the first sighting of the bobble, you immediately know that the weather is getting colder and that it’s time to quickly equip your sensitive head with this trusted and simple form of thermal protection. Its application is simple, just pop it on with minimal fuss or effort.

The humble and stylish bobble cap has been a trusted companion for many an exposed cranium. It first came to prominence in France when their fashionable, and highly intrepid sailors utilised the bobble as impact protection against potentially annoying low ship ceiling impacts when the waves became a tad too rough and violent.  

As the years progressed, the bobble gradually traversed the milliner barriers of naval seamen to those fortunate land based civilians with equal head appreciation. However, its purpose was now that of a visual stimulant, just like what is achieved when a glacial red cherry is strategically popped on top of a scoop of ice-cream.

So we thought….

COVID-19 has changed everything. Buried deep in a nonchalant medical laboratory in Melbourne, Australia, sits an intelligent, sophisticated man who is a research graduate specialising in virus containment. He is an avid follower of Australian Rules Football, his team being the mighty Geelong, where the colours are blue and white. He attends each game, dressed impeccably in his team jumper, scarf, complete with matching beanie, a blue bobble centrally located on top. However, on this remarkable occasion, whilst observing his fellow colour matched compatriots, he has, for some unknown reason, experienced what many a master of innovation classifies as a “Eureka moment of creativity”! The source of this moment of excitement being, none other than, the Geelong bobble.

Hold this thought….

In Australia, and in all countries around the world, it is difficult to tell who has been vaccinated and who hasn’t. One solution is to legislate that every fully vaccinated person, regardless of their age, carry a card of certification with them at all times. But, this methodology is fraught with potential danger as the majority of people are either forgetful, stupid, or just too lazy.

But, individuals of all ages do love to wear hats. And why not, as they enable the wearer to express their unique personality, can also signify membership in an organisation, school or team. Hats come in many shapes and sizes, can have a bobble, stalk (as in a beret), ribbon or band, and can be purchased in a plethora of different colours.

The innovative solution….

It was this concept that excited and stimulated the immense intellect of our Geelong football club supporter as he sat on the edge of that famous oval situated within Kardinia Park. The phenomenal solution being colour. For those that have been fully vaccinated, the colour of blue would be used for the bobble (or hat equivalent). For those half vaccinated, a light blue colour, for those unvaccinated, any other colour could apply. The solution, being colourfully simple.

So next time you see a bobble, have some respect for this spherical fibrous cluster as it has protected mankind throughout the centuries, and it will continue to do so for many years to come.

Feed Them “Meat”

For all those publicly acknowledged carnivores amongst us, there is a common phrase that is music to your famished ears, that being, “Feed them Meat”. Yes, there are many of us that have, and still do, happily savour the burning aromas from a simmering hot-plate with our knives sharpened, and our forks perched in eager anticipation ready for the mouthwatering onslaught. 

But alas, things are indeed a changing, and for a meat eater, the days of doing so are now becoming less acceptable to society as a new form of protein is strategically making its bloodless mark on the dining plate. The competition is in the form of a plant, and it is increasingly gaining an accepted gourmet reputation amongst diners of all ages around the globe. 

The manufacturers of this protein substitute are indeed most clever and have meticulously applied all their years of masterful university learning when situated in the chemistry laboratory, when the vast majority of us meat eaters were comfortably lounging about in a state of gastronomic stupor at the burger restaurant without a care in the world, blissfully unaware that our menus would soon change forever. 

The days of the “Big Mac”, “The Whopper”, or the world-renowned cheeseburger having pride of place on the ordering menu have now given way to “The Impossible Whopper”, “Beyond Meat”, even those common as muck meats such as chicken, fish and the humble egg can now be ordered in a plant-based version. I am not one to judge, nor hinder societal progress, as every consumer has the right to choose their preferred choice of protein. 

However, putting all meat prejudices aside, what I will state here is that the real winner is innovation. 

Who would have thought, that the term “meat” is no longer meat, but rather could be an animal or a possibly even a plant. The application of innovation has forced the simple consumer into actually making a decision on whether they say “bah humbug” and continue to munch in the manner of their forebears, or do they consider the sustainability needs of future generations? Who knows, only time and the gradual grinding of their teeth will tell. 

Remember the small child, maybe yourself, who in the past, would quickly summon their creativity and surreptitiously maneuver their unwanted vegetables, particularly any item that was green, under or within the meat that covered the majority of the plate. What will current generations now do in this emerging world of plant-based protein growth? Will the reverse occur as the animal protein is speedily eaten or camouflaged and hidden in copious amounts of vegetables and other plant like substitutes as they are too embarrassed to challenge the sustainable norm?

One thing is certain, progress is good, and so is innovation. Just ask any caveman whose diet was very simple and monotonous, and who would kill for a hearty meal, as long as it wasn’t them! So as that saying goes, “Feed them Meat…or Plants”, all is now acceptable. 

The Male COVID Head-Garden

For any creative men reading this blog post that have been forced into yet another COVID-19 lockdown, you may have run out of innovative ideas to keep yourself fully occupied whilst you are homebound.

Yes, all men are different, but as all families know, particularly those of the female persuasion, men need to have a different project for each COVID-19 home confinement, and one that entertains them for at least 24 hours in the day, otherwise, they go stir crazy!

Relax, and use your male head as therein lies the answer that you desperately seek, the solution being, to grow your own individual “head-garden”.

Like any garden, a head-garden needs to be planned, cultivated and requires continual maintenance in order to ensure an optimum hair foliage outcome. The follicle growth resides deep within the incumbent DNA structure of every man, and uniquely flourishes with their varying levels of male testosterone in a variety of potent fertiliser concentrations. The result being that no male head-garden is ever the same.  

Now to get started, your need a plan, as your head-garden won’t happen overnight, but it will happen, as any hairy man will attest.

Most men’s heads are blessed with a full range of potential garden plots as hairs sprout forth from a plethora of locations, that being on top of the head, face, eyebrows, ears and nostrils. Some hair plots do struggle if the testosterone levels are too high, but other man areas seem to compensate in order to maintain the desired follicle equilibrium.

The planning decisions are quite simple and are easily ploughed via the use of a sharp razor, or its lack of application where hairs can frequently grow wild. Once the geometric head-garden has been agreed, the man just needs to let nature take its course as the hairs will quickly and effortlessly propagate. Over the torturous days of lockdown, the hairs will bud out and take the intended form, just as man desired.

However, men can assist their head garden growth via the strategic application of numerous moisturisers, conditioners and shampoos, so as to encourage strong follicular growth. Personal scents and tonics can also be splashed onto any hairless exposed facial areas to add bespoke features to the head-garden personalisation.

Alas, with all COVID-19 lockdowns, they do eventually come to an end. At this point, the man now has to make a decision prior to his long awaited return to the corporate office, that being to keep the head-garden, or to slash and weed it. This is a tough man choice as he would have nurtured his head-garden with love and respect over the time of home incarceration.

The recommended solution is to take a head-garden photo, and to then enter it into your local council garden club competition for posterity. But don’t let your work colleagues see it, as each male head-garden is strictly for your own lockdown enjoyment, and men can get a tad too jealous.  

The Working from Home Wipeout







For those of you that have spent the past few months working from home with a COVID restraining legrope that has successfully tied you to your desk of self-isolation, there is a proven outdoor immersion wipeout that will immediately refresh your starved physical senses. This rejuvenation act is commonly known as surfing and is one that any progressive Human Resources Manager will strongly recommend to all corporate office employees, regardless of their age, sex or body flotation ability following weeks of incremental self pudgification.

Surfing requires minimal equipment, but one necessary prerequisite is water, ideally with movement in the form of waves that traverse up and down with regular repetition. The optimum wave size may vary, and is directly linked to the perceived risk profile of the employee, but in general, a slight pond ripple will be deemed too small, but an ocean tsunami is considered by many to be a tad too imposing, somewhere in between is the goldilocks wave and will be just right. My advice, seek out a beach as you will have a high probability in finding what you desire.

Regardless of the weather, most surfers adorn a wetsuit which is used to provide welcome thermal protection. But for those of us who may have visited the COVID lockdown household fridge on too many occasions, the wetsuit provides a more useful purpose. That being, an ideal girth circumferential retardant mechanism that maintains some sense of personal dignity, particularly when frolicking with one’s office colleagues in an uninhibited outdoor physical state, many of whom may not have seen you for an extended period of time. 

Another benefit of surfing is that electrically powered items and water are deemed by the laws of physics to be not compatible. As such, there will be no temptation to take your mobile phone or work computer with you, nor will you see any fridges stocked with food and drink to surreptitiously persuade you from your intended outdoor goal. 

Your eyes will also appreciate the lack of electrical gadgetry which may have negatively impacted your sight via continual teleconference concentration. Waves are typically quite large, so regardless of how good or poor your eyesight is, when an unexpected wave fully encapsulates your body and drives your face deep into the sand, you will know immediately of their presence.

A surfboard is also another necessary piece of kit as it assists with employee flotation. However, don’t forget the Archimedes Principle as the size of the board will need to be customised to the individual’s body surface area, which may have slowly increased owing to some slothful home working experience.

Practice does indeed make your chances of staying on top of your surfboard more successful, but that’s not the primary objective. Your HR Team want the sea water to effortlessly bleach out any residual mental constraints that may be hindering your return to the office. So go forth and get wet, and then go fully revitalized ready to Hang Five.

The Presidential Nose





This nose just keeps getting longer!

It’s now so large, that I need to stand at least 6 feet away from those that I’m talking to, otherwise my nose pierces them straight in the eye. But that’s OK, as most of my friends are one-eyed anyway.

Why it keeps growing, I have no idea, but after every media conference, directive and tweet that I posted, an additional inch immediately appeared? Funny, those colleagues in my political party all seem to have a similar malady? It’s not an issue, as COVID is fake, so I don’t need to wear a mask, and with a nose like this, it would be impossible anyway.

But a massive nose does have some advantages, particularly when playing golf. It’s like a second club that allows me to surreptitiously spike my ball and discreetly move it to a more favourable position on the fairway, or even on to the middle of the green. No one would notice, nor have the courage to say anything anyway, now would they?

Although the nickname President Pinocchio does have a certain pointedness to it, but after my two unsuccessful impeachment trials, some anonymity does have some benefits. Thanks again to my political compatriots, great to know that our values are fully aligned, and yes, with time, you do get used to the nose growth, albeit a tad visually annoying at first.

Sleeping has always been an issue, particularly as I could never sleep straight in bed, regardless of how much I tried. But, with this whopper of a nose, sleeping is superb as I can’t roll off my back without shish kebabbing the mattress, or those in a dangerous close proximity, so it’s the perfect sleep aid for a man with my nasal stature.  

And of course, there is the complex issue of blowing my nose, but this I have resolved masterly with creative innovation. Most people when they sneeze, say “pardon me”. Not me, I just Pardon those that supported my dubious Presidential endeavours. The result seems to please them, and therefore me, and as the saying goes, its always good to have a handkerchief in your pocket if required for a future Presidential campaign?

Well, that’s enough from me, for the time being…..

Sandals – Free your toes, and those ideas!







Yes, why don’t you put your weary corporate feet up on your desk and have a well-deserved rest. If you have done this, you will undoubtedly be experiencing that gleeful moment of soothing and calming bliss. And, should none of your work colleagues be looking, nor in close sensory proximity, surreptitiously remove your socks, or stockings, and free your corporately constrained toes. Once done, you will now be in a state of happy “pedibus” pleasure.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could maintain this toey enjoyment on a habitual basis, not one when you are made to feel like a foot rebel of non-corporate compliance?

You will be pleased to know that there is indeed a solution, one that is practical, is pleasing to the eye of those deemed to be astute, and meets the self-actualisation needs that your toes have been yearning for throughout your office working career.

The answer is called the “Sandal”.

Alas, many people walking the corridors of the corporate office do not have the courage to adorn this innovative fashion statement upon their feet for fear of unwarranted embarrassment or perceived ridicule. My response, how ridiculous! If you are a leader, you need to step up and put one bare toed foot in front of the other and claim your sandal wearing freedom.

Sandals are also the perfect foundation to support a culture of creativity and innovation. The spiffy sandal owner can wear a plethora of different coloured socks (even white), paint their toenails with voluminous vibrancy and choose from a range of chic sandal styles.

Those progressive corporate organisations that readily adopt this welcome addition to their corporate office wear will already be thinking about where to install the requisite foot podiatric self-cleansing units to maintain those basic psychological needs, that being an acceptable nice smelling working environment, in, and around, the employee’s desk.

Sandals are also the perfect complement to those wearing a stylish suit (perhaps safari), business shorts, paisley skirt, or even a kilt. Long or short socks are a choice left to the individual, but most instances, the naked foot is considered the optimum.

Think of the great leaders of yesteryear, many of which gladly wore and encouraged the wearing of sandals. I will admit that there are some impressive individuals that publicly didn’t, but when they got home, rumour has it that the first item of clothing to be immediately discarded were their uncomfortable shoes, quickly replaced with a soothing sandal.

Now for all those that have thoughts of achieving an innovative mindset, the answer is simple. You need to free your toes. Let them wiggle in harmony with all those ideas that have been bound and closeted in your mind for far too long. The choice is up to you, but do recognise that the wearing of the sandal provides the ideal catalyst, and one that you can quickly place upon your feet for everyone to see and appreciate.  

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