Things were getting desperate. P&F had been reduced to punting the "world's strongest beer" to the parenting press as a convenient party drink for the under-fives.

But still no outrage. We needed Alcohol Concern and the Daily Mail to unite in horror if we were going to get any publicity at all for this frankly filthy product.

Biggest, strongest and most expensive are PR classics and usually work a treat. Karoline (with a K) says moral outrage isn't what it used to be and we should try to find an animal rights angle. Suggest a possible animal-related source for the foul-tasting brew and bingo, client inspired to start stuffing. Nation's media up in arms.

Saved from the controversy by a call from our New York affiliate. They want someone who understands "British food grocers" to go over and help them plan the "eastern expansion of a failed west coast concept".

It's all hush-hush but my guess is that Tesco's "pile it high, don't sell much" fresh 'n' sleepy format is on the move. I'm on the first plane and ready to share all I can about the Clarke-Mason power struggle and what Tesco has learnt from Sainsbury's failed Shaw's experiment (ie nothing) only to find out that what they actually want is stuff about jolly olde English beefeaters, the Royal family, how to talk like Dick Van Dyke and whether James Herriot has come up with anything new lately.

Two things strike me: One, whatever they are planning sounds as though it has about as much chance of success as a Kerry Katona diet plan; and two, sometimes it's best to play the PR bimbo and live down to expectations.

Return to London sooner than expected and spend the rest of the week trying to place stories about the exciting world of delivered wholesale, but nobody interested! Can you believe it?

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