Saturday, 11 May 2013


*From an idea inspired by Tiernan Douieb

[scene: reception of a futuristic looking office building]

Man: Good morning.

Receptionist: Good morning sir, how can I help you?

Man: I have an appointment at ten o'clock to see Kirsty Wallbeck.

Receptionist [picking up phone]: Certainly sir, I'll ring through and let her know you've arrived. Can I just take your name?

Man: Yes, it's [shouting] FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES.

Receptionist [stammering, puts phone back down]: I'm sorry? Could you maybe repeat that?

Man: My name is, [sighs, then shouts] FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Receptionist: Your name is Findus Crispy Pancakes?

Man: No, not, Findus Crispy Pancakes, [shouting]  FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Receptionist: Sir, there's no need to shout, I can hear you perfectly well.

Man: No, you don't understand, it's to cover yourself, there's a court order you see...

Security Guard: Is there a problem here Karen?

Receptionist: Oh hiya Chris. This gentleman is here to see Kirsty, but every time I ask him his name, he says its...


Receptionist: [shouting] FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Security Guard: Karen, really. And sir, there are people trying work here and you're making a scene. I'd appreciate it if you could speak, not shout.

Man: But I'm only telling you my name.

Security Guard: And your name is, that, is it?

Man: [shouting] FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES, yes.

Security Guard: Sir, I don't want to have to tell you again.

Man: But that is my name, said in exactly that register. There's is a court order which states that every time my name is spoken aloud, it must be spoken in a fortissimo register.

Security Guard: Court order?

Man: Yes. It's part of the terms of the sponsorship deal.

Receptionist: Sponsorship deal? With who?


Man: Take a wild stab in the dark.

Receptionist: Oh, oh right, of course.

Security Guard: So what happened? How'd you end up being called, y'know?

Man: How does anyone end up with a dumb name?

Security Guard: Parents?

Man: Couldn't decide on a name, so they put it out on Twitter.

Receptionist: No?

Man: Yes.

Security Guard: God, that was a barbaric decade. Glad I wasn't born yet. Such a senseless waste.

Receptionist: And to call you [whispers] Findus too. After everything that's happened.

Man: Welcome to my life.

Security Guard: But why must you shout?

Man: Marketing. Story goes that the draper in charge of the Findus account needed a new idea to make pancakes relevant again. Came home from a night of coke and champagne & goes on Twitter on one of those touch screens, the retro ones the kids have these days.

Receptionist: I've got one. It's a jCloth. Love my jCloth.

Man: Anyway, someone he followed retweeted my parents tweet, and he came up with a plan to call me what I am called and then he rigged the vote & then made my parents sign a sponsorship deal they couldn't refuse.

Security Guard. But don't [whispers] the Findus Corporation, sponsor you then?

Man: They do, but the money all goes towards servicing my legal costs.

Receptionist: Legal costs?

Man [wearily]: I hate my name. I spent years in and out of courts battling, Them, over the rights to what I can be called. But the contract's watertight and eventually they priced me out of the case and so now not only am I, and all other sentient beings, required, by law, to pronounce my name in a fortissimo register, but anytime anyone asks for my name, under the terms of the contract, I have to answer. I wish I was dead.

Receptionist: But why don't you just.. erm... well... no, sorry, ignore me.

Man: What?

Receptionist: No, it's ok. I thought I had a thought, but it's silly, you'd have thought of that.

Man: No really, please, go on. I'm open to suggestions, [hollow laugh]I'm desperate.

Receptionist: Well, could you, maybe when you're shouting, like, whisper at the same time?

Man: Whisper?

Receptionist: Yeah, so like [whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Man: Oh right, so more like, [trying but still quite loud]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Receptionist: No, more like this, [whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Man: Ok, so, [whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Receptionist & Security Guard together: That's it.

Man: [whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES

Receptionist: That's exactly it.

Man: I don't know, what do you think? Do you think it makes me sound more or less like a mental person?

[together]  Receptionist: Less   Security Guard: More.

Man: One saying more, one saying less.

Security Guard: Well actually I just thought you sound more mental, but at least you sound mental to less people at once.

Receptionist: Actually, that's a good point. Chris made a good point.

Man: [whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES, FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES. You know what, I think it might work. 

[security guard wanders back to his post]

Receptionist [picks up phone]: Hi Kirsty, it's Karen. Your ten o'clock is waiting for you in reception. [cups hand over receiver, whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES, that's right, yes. Thanks Hon. [whispering & shouting]: FINDUS CRISPY PANCAKES, Kirsty will be down shortly, if you could just sign in on the screen to my right here.

Man: Certainly. All in CAPS?

Receptionist: Please.

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