Unsolicited Adverts

Jan Leeming

Shoreham 2007

Shoreham Airshow 2007
Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.



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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 13th June 2013


I really do object to the way advertising is rammed down our throats.

You want to watch a particular story flagged up on Google – but you are, invariably though not always, subjected to a video advert. Unlike your own TV where you can push the button and skip through the ads, if you try to do so with these, you are taken to a still of the advertised product and then have to start all over again.

And talking of adverts, the ad breaks can now add up to around 8 minutes in a one hour programme. And it really is ‘bombardment’ with the same ads repeated at each ad break. Is this subliminal? Is this a way of getting at our subconscious so that we remember the product when out shopping? I really don’t know, but have to say I am very rarely ever swayed by adverts and, on the rare occasions that I’ve succumbed have invariably found the product did not live up to the hype.

Years ago when staying with a friend in Australia I experienced the irritating adverts which popped up with all too regular frequency and very often just before the denouement of a particularly tense programme leaving only a minute or two of the programme to watch after the ad break. I thought this would never happen in the UK – but it has. Very often I will record a programme, rather than watch it at source, so as to be able to ignore the ads. I daresay that in the foreseeable future, the advertising lobby will fix it so that we can’t even take that action.

How much intrusion we suffer these days from totally unsolicited spam emails to nuisance calls even though one has subscribed to the TPS. Many of the spam emails come to an address which I haven’t used for 10 years so I know they are rubbish. I was particularly amused at receiving for years emails offering me ‘cut price Viagra’. I’m a woman for heaven’s sake.

I have to say I find it incredible that folk are sucked into the ones offering to share untold wealth with them or asking for a loan because they’ve been mugged and lost all their money and cards.

Anything even remotely alien or dodgy gets deleted immediately as does the unnecessary bundle of Ads delivered by the postman. I cannot believe the amount of junk legitimately delivered by Royal Mail – all in full colour. Aren’t we supposed to be ‘saving the planet’ and here is all the unsolicited advertising using paper and coloured ink and, in my case, going straight in the bin without even being looked at. Long gone are the days when the clatter of the letterbox meant a card or a letter from a friend and loved one. Now the clatter announces bills and piles of ads and very very rarely there might just be a note from an old friend and by that I mean in both senses of the word – old as in of a long duration and old as in age and that’s because many of the really older generation don’t have computers and still have the courtesy to write.

I’m glad I’ve hoarded letters from my son and friends over the years – when I’m older and greyer and have little else to do, I can sit and sift through my memories. I’m sad that my son communicates by electronic mail because he used to write lovely letters to me.

Only the other day I was sent a copy of a letter written to René Mouchotte’s mother in 1946. The writing was beautiful, the sentiments expressed on her son’s death were poignant and here it is, all these years later, a document which evokes love and memories. Can’t say I feel the same about printing off an email note.

As you know I’m just a Grumpy Old Woman and getting grumpier. So glad I was born when I was – I think my generation were very very lucky. We were born during and after a war which saw people drawn together in a mutual bond of courage and hope. Most of us had very little, food was rationed but we didn’t starve and, in fact, had a much healthier diet than today. My father has had an allotment all his life up until his blindness meant he could no longer garden. One of my childhood memories of him was going off on his bike to do his gardening.

There was no central heating for most of us, we walked to the bus or the train. Most of us had no phones or cars and very simple outings gave us enormous pleasure. We had a strong work ethic (mind you there were many more jobs around then) and the only way was UP. If you have very little, you are grateful for everything even hand-me-down furniture.

I’ve come a long way from complaining about Ads – ah well.

Till next time. Jan

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