It's heartening to see social media as a post-riots force for good, with local people banding online to show their feelings for neighbourhood retailers.

This has taken a different twist around the corner from the P&F offices, with the Twitter campaign #StayClosedMrP urging our erstwhile c-store supremo, whose loss-making shop was apparently "struck by lightning" during the troubles, to stay shut as a service to the community. Anyway, as multiple formats get ever smaller, the hot money is on a Tesco Micro being built on the site.

There's no time for shopping now because the PR pitch season is upon us. All the important purchases have been made anyway. The five-inch heel Burlina black patent Louboutins. The gorgeous Alexander McQueen zip-fronted black and white tweed print dress. Both essential items in the battle that is new business.

People have written books about pitching, but Karoline (with a K) has clear views on how the whole affair of winning over new clients should be approached.

"Do the PowerPoint the night before and practice on the train. Too much rehearsal makes us stale. Think tits and legs darlings. Always lean forward at the meeting table. Account's in the bag." Such a shallow view of the UK's food and drink brand marketers. And so effective.

We used to celebrate new client wins with Beluga, blinis and Bolly. In the spirit of the times it's now TUC biscuits (one of the products Poundland uses to make everything else look premium) and a Sainsbury's wine box.

"There's a bottle missing from this box," spluttered Karoline as it ran out after one round of toasts. And she was right. It may be fine for chocolate, coffee, cheese and nappies, but downsizing has gone too far when it interferes with blotting out a day on the new business trail.