It’s Pimm’s O’Clock!

Louis Pattison, you swarthy Britt, you couldn’t have stated it better. “Any perplexed foreigner keen to brush up on the peculiarities of the British class system could do worse than sitting down with a stiff one and a selection of advertisements for intoxicating liquids. Here, you see, the tangled fabric of Great British society is laid bare. Pimm’s, tipple of choice for guffawing toffs from Glyndebourne to the Royal Regatta, know there’s little point selling their drink as “a cool tonic for a summer’s day”. No, this is a drink for people as posh as swan’s necks, so their brand is embodied by a chap – played by eager ad-whore Armstrong of TV comics Armstrong And Miller – who behaves so well-bred one suspects generations of enthusiastic interbreeding have left the strands of his DNA bent out like nightmarish concertinas. We find Armstrong strolling through the woods, where he comes upon a group of tattooed proles who, judging by the cliches present – security van, money, spades – are fresh from a heist. Armstrong, however, just sees thirsty mouths and decides “It’s Pimm’s o’clock!” Instead of holding him at gunpoint and forcing him to dig his own grave – perhaps freezing his tears and drinking them later with a liquor more befitting of their lowly station – the thieves do what the British working class does when faced with but a shred of attention from a toff. They toady – toady like the Queen Mum ‘erself came to visit! Soon everyone’s sipping, but such disregard for Great Britain’s caste laws cannot be tolerated. The cops rush in, the poor get their comeuppance, while Lord Gemstones merries off through life with a cocktail and not a care in the world. Toodlepip!”

from The Guardian, 7.26.2008


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