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The Apprentice Week 9 – Donald Trump, Bushra and Stand up Comedy

One sees a lot of posts and hears a few comments of “Cor blimey Gov, that Apprentice – that lot couldn’t tie their own shoes laces – my 12 year old could do better than that…” I kind of think that’s low hanging fruit, it’s a bit obvious and, actually, some of these contestants have talent. My Apprentice glass tends to be half full rather than half empty.

Oh, how that has drained away with each passing week. Even the good ones showed huge shortcomings this week.

Let’s start with Jade. Jade strikes me as bright and capable, focussed, pleasant. True she had to work with the bundle of joy and positivity known as Joanna, but she’s in Marketing and PR and so thinking of a name and designing packaging for the food should have been a task which played to her strengths. The name. So, they wanted something “to do with your mind and natural.” Hmm. Tough one, isn’t it? No! It’s easy: “Food for Thought” or “Brainfood”. There, done. What do we get? Natrofuel. What does that even mean? Natro? Fuel I get it, but who wants to eat a bowlful of diesel? Then, the packaging. Give anyone a day, someone to bounce ideas off and a designer armed with a Mac and I would really like to think they would have enough wit about them to create something better than a cardboard box with a wrapper around it. Fail. Sad. Loser.

Then there’s James. I like James, sensible fella, calm. However, he can’t peel an onion and was once again swept aside by Big Liz. There are creatures lurking under rocks on Blue Planet with more backbone than James. Loser. Sad.

Michaela. I think Michaela’s great – she’s funny, energetic; I wouldn’t want her as my partner on Pointless, but you know, she gets the job done. There are people standing trial in The Hague with greater emotional intelligence than Michaela displayed when she took the packaging from Harrison as he stumbled through reading the cooking instructions. Michaela, Harrison doesn’t need you to make him look foolish in front of a TV audience of millions – he’s more than capable of doing that on his own. Sad. Fail.

Sarah, Sarah with the eyes. Sensible Sarah, often the only adult in the room. She must get lonely. Again, I get it with the name. Gourmet Crusaders. It’s a minor error, but come on; the clue is in your colleague at your side wearing a hijab. Join the dots, Sarah. And on one level, it’s a game show, it’s entertainment, it’s people scooping up poop, but ultimately you’re a professional asked to imagine launching a product to the general public – you need to be more culturally sensitive and aware of the wider resonance of words. Sad. Fail.

However, this week’s loser was Bushra. Now I know all the publicity stuff for the show says she owns her own boutique fashion line, but that’s just a front – Bushra is, in fact, a stand up comedian. And oh how she wowed us with her gags during the pitch. Here’s her best zinger:

“We would have loved to have had Captain Gourmet himself here today…but unfortunately…”

Wait for it, here comes the punchline…wait for it…

“Donald Trump called him over!”

I laughed so much I thought my boxers would never dry. I can’t wait for her to pop up on Mock the Week, I really can’t. What I don’t understand is why anyone would make fun of Donald Trump. I just don’t get it. He has a fine head of hair, and who doesn’t like a good orangey tan? His hands are standard issue in size as well. Cicero himself looks somewhat leaden tongued when compared to Trump’s magnificence as an orator. Some politicians tweet like a drunk sitting on a toilet scrolling through their phone, but Trump brings a grace and poise to the form that must make Churchill wish he could rise form the grave in attempt to match Trump’s insight and judgement expressed in 140 characters or less. And why a woman and a Muslim would have a pop at Trump is beyond me.

Donald Trump is the very model of what a leader should be: modest, considered, wise and with a profoundness of insight into mankind beyond the grasp of most mortals. And yet he is mocked, he is pilloried; he is the punchline to jokes at pitches for gourmet food. There is nothing funny about Donald Trump, in my opinion; I think it’s time we stopped making fun of him – we need to take him seriously, very seriously indeed.

Tenuous recruitment link of the week? When no one comes up to scratch, re visit the brief, look at the package on offer and start again. I note that Lord Sugar is now inviting applicants for next year.

For more information contact Rob Barklamb at BCL Legal.

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