What better way to spend a sunny Friday than at the races, so last week saw me sipping Champagne with a selection of fellow gamblers courtesy of MBL. I thought my luck was in when I had the winner in the first two races, but it didn't last. In fact, as is so often the case, it was my esteemed colleague and first-time race-goer John Wood, editor of sister magazine ProWholesaler, who was in pole position, being robbed of a handsome amount only in the final race. But at least I didn't do as badly as MBL comms director Rod Alexander, who received a pair of socks to mark his poor performance in picking winning horses. Top tipster Steve Neale, operations director of Warner Enterprises, walked away with a big smile and a painting.
Talking of painting, facepaints were out in force at Innocent Drinks' Fruitstock festival in Regent's Park. After my heavy day at the racing, I could think of nothing better than chilling out to music, great food and healthy smoothies. Still, Innocent's co-founder Adam Balon was certainly in the mood for partying. Wisely, however, he had booked the following week off work.
As if that wasn't enough, I took a trip down to West Sussex and the West Dean Chilli Fiesta to check out the products too hardcore to be found on your standard Tesco shelves. Sure enough, there were lots of sauces promising all sorts of evil things, with colourful names such as Satan's Snot and Hellfire. But what really got the tastebuds going was getting my hands on a chilli sauce that has a one million Scoville Units rating (400 times hotter than Tabasco sauce). Not only does it come with a pipette, because one drop is enough to kill a small elephant, you are advised to handle it only with gloves. I even had to sign a disclaimer waiving the company of responsibility for any ill-effects due to misuse. Needless to say, I have decided to keep the bottle with me at work, just in case anybody rubs me up the wrong way...