A bit of a Conn


I came across Greenwich. I didn’t know what it was. I do now.

It’s one of those local lifestyle glossies (emphasis on “style” rather than “life”), full of local wannabe celebs in formal poses at social do’s. It a collection of snippets and “articles”, including the usual retrospective from donkeys’ yonks ago. The editorial is mere wrap-around for the ads — property porn, luxury goods, the kinds of cars that would cost ordinary folk a mortgage bigger than their home.

But Greenwich is über-glossy, über-everything, because it hails from Greenwich, Connecticut. Which is where those Wall Street bankers hang out. Much of the content should be read as a monument to bad taste and “more money than sense”.

For a North Norfolk lad (see previous), the real stomach-turner was this:



Now, I’ve just been buying Farrow & Ball for two rooms. I know, with a shiver, what these paints cost. I hate to think what “minus an arm-and-a-leg” is, converted into dollars.

Farrow and Ball, to my shlock-horror, do have a paint colo(u)r in their range, number 281, called “Stiffkey Blue”. Quite where you would actually use it, and for how long before reality struck, and you painted the thing a quieter tone, … well, that’s a very Greenwich sort of issue.

So, I say to Nathan Tavares, the author of that piece: “You don’t know what you are talking about”.

For a start that’s not a “messenger bag”. It’s an old-school satchel. Even in poncy colo(u)rs, you should get a decent one for less than thirty dollars, sales tax included. Paying six times that going price tells me all I want to know about Greenwich, CT.

But the killer is “Stiffkey Blue”.

StiffkeyThe correct term, Sarah Cole, is “Stewkey Blues“. They are the distinctively-blue shells of the local cockles. I’ve always assumed they took their colour from the layer of mud that’s never too far below the surface of those marshes. And you’d need to tramp across Stiffkey Greens to the West Sand before you could dig for your Stewkey Blues.

As for fantasy of “wind-tossed waves off the English coast”, Nathan Tavares … where have you been? We don’t do Mediterranean blues in Norfolk: the North Sea tends, like the Limpopo River, to a grey-green, greasy at the best of times. Put that on your Farrow & Ball colo(u)r card, and smoke it.


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Filed under advertising., Norfolk, social class, United States

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