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Funny Stuff

The Apprentice Week 5 – A View From The Cheese Shop

It amazes me, that at 6.15 in the morning, some candidates are fully dressed in their ‘business attire’ and waiting with baited breath to find out that the cars are will be outside in a ridiculously short space of time.  Normally at that time, I’m in deep slumber, dreaming about being fully dressed, and when I am up, and waiting on a taxi, it’s seems to be constantly 5 minutes away, with the driver ‘being up the road a bit… it’s a blue Volkswagen; you’ll see it in a second, pal.’
It’s always a white Peugeot.

This week, we saw the two teams making a new fresh fitness regime to pitch to 3 major players in the fitness world, Fitness First, Virgin Active and someone else.

Phoenix had the shiny suited Stephen Brady as a team leader. He comes from a fitness background (therefore explaining the shiny suit) and thus, it was only natural for him to head this up; and by the way he asked to be PM, the team weren’t really left with a choice in the matter
On team Sterling, Ricky Martin, with his professional wrestling background, gym attendance and going through fitness programmes to be the best of the best and whatnot, put himself forward as PM, challenged only by Jenna Wittingham, who claimed to be best suited because she rides horses.
However Ricky wasn’t only the team leader, he was the mastermind behind the new saying of the minute… “Witness the fitness with me, Ricky Martin”. I know I’m not the only person in the world who started singing ‘Living la vida loca’ at this point, making it impossible for any fitness to be witnessed.
So what had Ricky got up his sleeve? Mixing martial arts and dancing , which basically would appeal to anybody who has no knowledge of either of these activities.

Stephen and Sterling thought that, because the 80’s are “in” , and 80’s dancing is “in”, an 80’s style workout dance would naturally be “in”. He managed to prove that it isn’t. It’s very much out.
Stephen’s team toodled off to an 80’s themed nightclub to speak to three girls who looked exactly like girls of today dressed in 80’s clothes (they came directly from last week’s episode) and explained what the idea was. With some dance routines being displayed, we were treated to Adam making an odd grunting sound here and there and trying to dance like Michael Jackson, in a suit. The name ‘Groove Train’ was sadly born.

Sterling had Ricky punch a couple of practice pads, and spin around a couple of time, then explaining that it was different to Boxercise, because ‘you use your elbows’. In Boxercise, you see, one keeps one’s elbows tight by one’s side, swinging only the forearm back and forth. So it’s different, got-it?? This activity was dubbed Beat Battle; which funnily enough was the original title of the movie ‘8 mile’; ironically the exact distance I would run if I were asked if I would like to participate in either ‘Groove Train’ or ‘Beat Battle’.

Without haste, we were thrown into day 2, and the making of the exercise videos.
Duane ‘Never look a gift horse in the face in general’ Bryan was put in charge of Sterling’s ‘Beat Battle’ promotional video. Rottweiler Laura was the dancer (ahem, martial artist) and was going to be the star of the video, and Nick Holzheer wore a pair of earphones. A couple of waving elbows, swinging knees and a rift in the subteam later; Duane called it a wrap.
As this was all going on, Phoenix and the ‘Groove Train’ idea were in that 80’s themed nightclub, filming with space hoppers, hula-hoops, but more hilariously, Azhar Siddique in a pair of children’s red shorts; because that’s what we all wore in the 80’s.
It seems that The Apprentice tasks of yesteryear always have a similar trait; when there is a video being made, the person charged with the direction becomes James Cameron, tensions are created, and arguments ensue. I must say, however, that Karen did a great job of looking utterly underwhelmed at anything anyone was doing.

The morning of the pitches saw Ricky proudly lead his team into Virgin Active, to promote and sell ‘Beat Battle’. The video showed Laura talking to the camera about how brilliant it is, but spoiled all her hard work by turning from the camera by dramatically lifting one leg and spinning majestically on the other. Is that part of the exercise? Should… should I do that?
The first question from the Virgin team… ‘It’s a bit like Boxercise, isn’t it?’… NO! YOU NEVER USE YOUR ELBOWS IN BOXERCISE!!

Stephen and team Sterling were off to Fitness First to push ‘Groove Train’ and how brilliantly unique it is. And then the video began…
It was Azhar, doing regular exercises in those pair of shorts, with hula-hoops and space hoppers thrown in. The main question… where in Gods name are Fitness First going to fit all these space hoppers and hula-hoops in their massive gyms??
I suggest the bin.

The teams carried on, promoting said products to Fitness First, Virgin Active and that other crowd; where we got to witness the Beat Battle’s ‘Super Punch’. It was a bit like the Karate Kid crane kick, only with your fist. (AND ELBOW!!)

Back at the boardroom; the eyes of the opposing teams were darting back and forth between each others products.
Then the videos started…. again.
Beat Battle didn’t raise too many eyebrows.
Then the ‘Groove Train’ began; and the reaction you’d imagine from someone seeing it for the first time happened, with Azhar looking uncomfortably at the ground.
The numbers were announced; Beat Battle had two of the gyms put in orders. In the bag; Ricky is a hero…
But wait! Karen, you suspense building ol’ scoundrel, you! After bluntly stating that Fitness First and the other gym ‘hated the idea’; Virgin loved the ‘family feel’ to it and proposed almost £13000!
Ricky then brought back the two people who probably worked the hardest on this task, (apart from Nick Holzheer… he wore headphones, remember.) Duane and Laura.

Laura, was immediately let off the hook, and Ricky managed to ‘wrestle’ himself out of being sacked (I’m sorry) by using words like ‘delegated’, ‘disappointed’ and ‘appropriate’.

Poor Duane has got the chop. Undeserved I might add.

It should have been the shorts.



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