The Land of TiddlyPom

By Charles Wyndham.

Our's is such a wonderful world of make belief at times that we really should be grateful that we have the opportunity to go splashing about in it.

Nothing has been bringing this more to my attention than the eye catching titles that some are awarding themselves, and others, that are being given to the more deserving.

In particular, I cannot but help myself smiling whenever I read that someone is a “designate”.

Technically it is quite in order. The Oxford English Dictionary confirms this, but it is amusing the example that it gives is, “bishop designate”.

Well, at De Beers the soon to be departure of the actual MD, Ralfe, the Finance director, Kell, has opened up a wonderful field of opportunity.

We have now a De Beers MD designate, MD of DTC designate, a Sales Director of DTC designate etc.

In a recent letter to Business Day in South Africa the import of the letter from the DTC was reinforced by the addition of designate to the title of the author.

Of course, the importance of the author did not make the letter contain any more sense than one would expect from the kingdom of TiddlyPom, where I am sure that titles are of immense significance.

In this land of TiddlyPom, which in a perfect world would only be accessible down the ‘Yellow Brick Road’, the rather charming anarchy that pervades it is only becoming more approachable.

One of the designates has already earned the soubriquet of ‘retriever’, you know one of those delightful dogs that will always chase after a ball and bring it back to your feet… only to rush after it again if you can be bothered to throw it.

Yes, the level of reassurance of doing business with the DTC can only be growing for all its lucky customers as they march up and down the Yellow Brick Road.

It reminds me of the Grand Old Duke of York who took immense pleasure, according the Number One hit in TiddlyPom, in marching his soldiers up to the top of the hill and then down again. 

The key refrain in this smash hit is, “When they were up, they were up. When they were down, they were down.  When they were only half way up they were neither up nor down.”

I am sure that all the sightholders waiting with baited breathe through the holiday season in anxious anticipation of the first sight for 2006, must be whistling this happy refrain.