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Dr John Hawkins

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Posted on 2007/10/31 08:19:10 (October 2007).

[Sunday 28th October]
Spent the morning adding a new feature to our blogs here at the Maison de Stuff - an RSS feed for comments (see here for an example).

In the afternoon we went out to do some shopping - went to Fortnum and Mason to buy teabags, and then went to a few clothes shops in an attempt to find me a new coat, what with the onset of winter and everything. It was an ultimately fruitless search - nothing particularly appealed to me. We did go to a fairly broad cross section of places though, from the very cheap (H&M) to the very expensive (Aquascutum) and it occurred to me that the styles were all basically the same in each place, and all you were really paying for was perhaps a slight improvement in quality, but fundamentally a less cluttered shop. The H&M on Oxford Street is like a jumble sale, with clothes strewn all over the floor, and people everywhere - we wanted to leave almost as soon as we arrived. Aquascutum is at the opposite end of this spectrum, a big wide open space with just a few people, most of whom were being taken care of by shop assistants (but I still wanted to leave as soon as I had arrived)...

However, in terms of the actual coats, they didn't seem to be radically different - but whereas you could pick up a serviceable garment for 40 quid in H&M, the price tags in Aquascutum were more in the region of 600 pounds.

Is this not true to some extent of all shops? As human beings we all fundamentally have the same requirements - food, clothing etc. In times past, the poor would wear hessian whilst the rich would wear silks and furs - so there was some sense in the different pricing of these things. Today though it all looks pretty much the same, and all that varies is the label (and the price tag). Rich people want to pay more for essentially the same stuff simply to prove they can. This has become an accepted norm of our society, but when you take a step back and have a look at it, it's sheer madness.

Back at the flat we had Pimm's Winter again, this time as recommended on the label, warmed, with three parts apple juice to 1 part Pimm's Number 3. Oh and we added a few drops of Angostura, just because I'm obsessed with this stuff. I'm not normally a fan of apple juice, but found this drink very satisfying.

We had a late dinner tonight, whilst watching the last episode of Michael Palin's New Europe. It was s simple meal - temaki sushi (that's the DIY variety) with avocado, omelette, cucumber and umeboshi.

Comment 1

Check out this website I love the facts about the label being too big ....

Posted by John's Mum at 2007/10/31 10:08:18.

Comment 2

I would have gone for the 600 quid coat, I mean I work in this business so I guess that I can tell you all the differences that are in place. The fact that these brands didn't manage to communicate them to you means that they have failed, which is their problem of course.. You need me as a personal shopper, a ticket to London, free accommodation and a flat sum of 1000 pounds will do the trick for you! How about next weekend?

Posted by Lox at 2007/10/31 18:35:10.

Comment 3

Sorry, Lox, I'm there then! Although the most expensive thing I will be buying is violet cream chocolates.

Posted by John's Mum at 2007/10/31 19:06:29.

Comment 4

Lorenzo; yes I do feel like my wardrobe could do with updating, and yet whenever I do go out to buy new clothes I am typically underwhelmed. So some advice would be very much appreciated. It would be fantastic if you could come to London at some point!

Posted by John at 2007/10/31 22:26:18.

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