Old Cries Of London

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the streets of London were full of people selling their wares to anyone passing by. To get themselves noticed, the sellers would invent cries, which were often elaborate rhymes which they hoped would attract customers. Many of these are now lost to history, but I found some accompanying a selection of printed woodcuts.

My game are round and fat you see,
If on the price we can agree:
These ducks but one day since were shot,
And suit alike the spit or pot.
Or if for game you’re not inclin’d,
Here is a chicken to your mind.

Here is spice-cake for those good boys,
Who better love their books than toys;
And little girls may have their share,
As often as they sew with care:
Here he comes! his basket smokes;
BUY SOME SPICE, good little folks.

Here little girls will doubtless find
What cannot fail to please their mind;
Bedsteads of every size the best,
On which their painted dolls may rest:
And ‘tis but right that you should grant,
What you yourself so often want.

Alive and fresh, good herrings oh!
Six a groat, is cheap, you know.
Off Britain’s coast they late were caught,
And in a ship but just now brought.
If Mrs. Cook will dress them well,
Of their goodness you will tell;
Or if, to salt them you’re inclin’d,
There’s not a doubt they’ll suit your mind.

Little folks will lend an ear
When this pair approaches near;
Their buns are found so very nice,
They are always eager for a slice,
But if flour should rise anew,
To hot-cross buns we bid adieu.

In the Gazette GREAT NEWS to day,
The enemy is beat, they say. –
But, what, alas! will that avail?
Since war we still have to bewail.
Yet all are eager to be told
The news that new events unfold.

Nice mutton dumplings! smoking hot,
And just brought boiling from the pot:
Take my word, they are very good;
Besides, they make substantial food.
Consider now the price of meat,
And you’ll say they are also cheap.

These radishes, so fair and round,
To please the palate will be found;
Fourteen a penny is the price,
You’ll surely buy, they are so nice.
Try with a few good radishes,
How bread and butter relishes.

Old shoes! old hats! come little dear,
To hear me cry you need not fear;
There’s difference great between us two,
I always cry but seldom you,
And you cry tears I should suppose,
While I cry nothing but old Cloaths.

Selling Yourself: The Last Part

The final episode (that I had forgotten about) of my history of jobs before I became an EMT. No more after this, I promise!


This is the final episode in what has become a seven-part saga relating my experiences in numerous selling jobs. As I come to the end of this part of my history, it has occurred to me that I have now covered on this blog a great deal of my working life; also all three marriages, as well as my day to day life at the moment.

I have commented on countless films, and quite a lot of music, as well as voicing my opinions about world events, domestic politics, and other issues. Almost 330 posts, which I have to look back on, to even remember what I wrote at the time. Am I running out of things to write about? I have lived for sixty-one years, and almost covered that life so far. I will have to hope that this is not the case, and search my memory. I may…

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Selling Yourself: Part Six

Another reblog from 2013, continuing this series about my early career in sales. I thought it was in 6 parts, but have just rediscovered a last part, which I will post tomorrow. I think only Jude has seen this before.


I hope I am not wearing down my readers, with this unusually long series on my exploits in the world of sales. Judging by figures for the posts, enthusiasm has dimmed somewhat since Part One. There is one more to go after this, and that will take me up to the Ambulance Service. No more selling stories to come after that, I promise.

As I have previously told you, I needed a job, as the shop was not paying enough to save for a future. I saw one advertised locally, and had an idea that I could get it, if I gave a good interview. It was back to sausages and pies, something I at least knew a lot about. My first employer in that field had now been swallowed up, and had become part of the brand leader, who had been my second employer. There was a new number…

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Selling Yourself: Part Five

Part five of a series from 2013. This covers the time when my mother and I ran our own business. For the benefit of non-UK readers, an ‘Off-Licence’ is known elsewhere as a ‘Liquor Store’.


At the end of Part Four, I mentioned two more jobs, both covered previously, in other posts. These are behind us as we continue, and it is now 1976. My next sales venture was back in retail, though in a very different way from before, and for totally different reasons. I have touched on this earlier, in a post I called ‘Looking after Mum’, and I will now go into it in more detail, and if you will forgive me, at considerable length.

When my Dad left, and forced the sale of the marital home, I was working as a taxi driver in Kent, and Mum was working in an office job. I was in my early 20’s, and did not want to be tied to a mortgage at the time, especially one taken out with my own Mum. However, it was highly unlikely that we would have qualified for…

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Selling Yourself: Part Four

Reblogging part four in this series of six from 2013. I got another job, but didn’t enjoy it very much this time!


The reason the interview for my next job was on a Saturday, was because the staff started far too early, to allow for a weekday interview process. After less than seven days, technically unemployed, but paid until the end of the month, I was taken on by this new company, following the most basic meet and greet, and a quick driving assessment. They were so short of staff, even the top managers were out doing rounds, so as long as I could read, write, and drive, I was certain to be employed.

I was back on van sales once again, this time for a bread company in the Medway area, Betabake. Knowing that they had little hope of competing with the brand leaders like Wonderloaf, and Sunblest, they concentrated instead on the neglected ‘personal retail’ market. This was a posh term for door-to-door selling and delivering, something like a milkman…

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Selling Yourself: Part Two

As requested by some readers, here is part 2 of my 6-part series ‘Selling Yourself’, from 2013. I have decided to repost them all, and I think only Jude has seen this one before.


I was a bit fed up with records by now. I wanted to listen to them, collect them, and discuss them, not sell ones I didn’t like, to argumentative heavy metal fans, and old ladies. I researched new markets in which to invest my skills.

Food, and shopping for food, was changing dramatically by then. Large supermarkets, called Fine Fare, Safeway, and Tesco, were beginning to dominate high streets, especially in the suburbs. Even the traditional grocery shops, represented by Lipton’s,  J. Sainsbury, and the ubiquitous Co-Op, were enlarging their stores, and reducing the amount of goods physically served to the customer. Self-Service was the new shopping catchphrase, and working women were no longer the housewives of the past.

Along with the busier lifestyles, came the need for food that was easier to prepare, required less fuss and bother, and could all be bought in one place. It wasn’t quite…

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Selling Yourself: Part One

Back in 2013, I wrote a six-part series about my life before I became an EMT. This is the first part. I warn you, it is quite a long read. Not many of you have seen it before ( Except Jude and Vinnie) so it may interest you to know more about my early working life. If you enjoy it let me know, and I will re-post the rest in order.


From the time I left school, until I joined the London Ambulance Service, was a period of less than twelve years. During that time, I had an unusually high number of jobs, all but one of which involved selling, in one form, or another. I have written about some of those jobs before, but I have recently reflected on just how easy it was to get work, to come and go as you pleased, sometimes starting and leaving three jobs in the same year. In today’s world, of high unemployment, no-hours contracts, reduced Trade Union rights, and a return to the Victorian era. with no paid holidays, or sick leave, it makes me realise just how easy it was, to live in the 1960’s and 1970’s, compared to the present day. My own employment history, before settling down in the Ambulance Service, may seem like a poor CV. In those…

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Affiliate Bloggers: A Tip

Hello to all you affiliate bloggers. Those of you hoping to make some money by writing blog posts with buying links to products. Yes, you are honest about that, and I thank you for that honesty. Why not use the Internet to create a business that pays you money without having to actually buy-in any products? That sounds like a good idea.

But here’s my tip.

Research your target market before following a blogger that you hope may be someone who would use your links to purchase products.

Take me, as an example. I am a man, and I am 69 years old.

I don’t wear lipstick.
I do not have a ‘skincare regime’.
I do not have extensions in my hair.
I do not have enough hair left to bother about using special shampoos.
I am white skinned. (Photo on my About page, if you want to check)
That means I do not need special products designed for darker skin types.
I don’t use foundation make-up, or eye shadow.
I do not use nail polish, or wear false fingernails.
(Some 69 year old men might, and I don’t judge them for that)
I do not have any need for a ‘natural’ make-up remover.
I might be considered to be ‘plus size’, but I do not wear ‘shaping garments’ to hide that.

I wish you well with your ventures, and I am just trying to save you the time and trouble of directing your marketing at the wrong bloggers.

Comments Awaiting Moderation: A Warning

In the past four days alone, I have counted fifteen comments awaiting approval that were merely links to a post or product for sale by the person supposedly commenting on my post. I have warned you before, and here is that warning again.

A link to what you are selling is NOT a comment.

A link to your post is NOT a comment.

Just asking me to follow your blog is NOT a comment.

Anyone who does this on my blog is instantly SPAMMED, and the comment deleted.

So don’t tell me you haven’t been warned.

Targeted Following

All of us know that we get followers who are not really followers. They are trying to sell stuff.

This is getting worse, at least as far as my blog is concerned. Here are a few examples. I have not included links to their blogs, as I refuse to give them any publicity.

1) I write a post about acne in old age. It was a reblog from years ago, and I don’t have it any longer.

Next thing I know, I have two new followers. Neither of the blog names suggest anything remotely concerning selling, so I check them out.
One is selling ‘remedies’ for acne, and the other selling miracle cures for any skin complaint. These are 21st century snake oil salesmen.

2) I write a post about my wife having tests to see if she has breast cancer. I get an email from a new follower urging me to check out his site. It concerns the sale of some magical formula made from something like mushrooms. You can bet I spammed the blog comment they tried to leave too.

3) In my alphabet series, I wrote about how much I am disgusted by most forms of hunting, especially trophy hunting.
Tonight, I get a new ‘follower’ whose site is advertising the latest in telescopic sights for hunting rifles, slings to carry them with, and cases to keep them in.

This is the bad side of blogging, and I really don’t like it.

I won’t put ‘Followers’ on my list of things I don’t like though, as most of you are wonderful of course!