In a nutshell: Bankers.
The 411: A scrawny Coldplay-looking Indiescum chomps down on his food in a two-bit Brazilian cafe. The feijoada is delicious so he gives the OK hand gesture to the obese, coke-blitzed Maradona lookalike behind the bar. A deathly pause follows – foolish Indiescum has not realised that this is a deeply obscene gesture in Brazil and he is dragged out by fatty and beaten to death with a tin of pineapple chunks.
"foolish Indiescum has not realised that this is a deeply obscene gesture in Brazil and he is dragged out by fatty and beaten to death with a tin of pineapple chunks."
"At HSBC, we never underestimate the importance of local knowledge," intones the narrator solemnly as flies gather around the still-warm corpse of the Inter-railing turd.
We know that our money’s safe with them, because they would never dream of setting up a pork hot-dog stand outside a Mosque like NatWest did that time or making the sign of the cross in the Glasgow Rangers executive box like those Abbey Nat cowboys. And HSBC parading through the Bank of the Philippines in an "I Came To Be A Sex Tourist And All I Got Was This Lousy T-shirt" T-shirt is but a remote possibility.
Thank God one of our big five banks is guarding against such social faux pas by reading stories of Mexicans wearing ponchos and Red Injuns sitting on um floor by the wigwam and such. At HSBC, they can fuck you over in 1000 languages and then charge like a wounded rhino for the privilege.
So when you’re taking it in the Gary from your HSBC bank manager find comfort in the knowledge that it is being done to others all over the world in a culturally appropriate manner. And all by a man with an endless store of apocryphal tales about global custom – banking’s answer to John Noakes.
"Here’s another quaint Japanese custom you may remember – they used to string up half-starved American PoWs by their feet and torture them for days."
I’ve had it with these fucking adverts. And don’t get me started on the golf one, where an American businessman has no option but to buy expensive gifts for his Japanese partners after hitting a hole-in-one. It is their ancient custom you see – to rip-off idiot Americans by inventing ancient customs which invariably mean the American emptying his wallet.
I’d tell those opportunistic bastards to fuck themselves – give them a sherbet dip and four straws and tell them be very grateful for it because the next time I score a hole-in-one and they try and jack me for luxury items the only thing they’ll get is my nine iron up their arse.
Here’s another quaint Japanese custom you may remember – they used to string up half-starved American PoWs by their feet and torture them for days. Forgotten about that soon enough haven’t you, you plaid wearing turd? Then there was this really funny thing the Americans used to do in Japan in the 40s – wage nuclear war. Those guys just crease me up.
I don’t like anthropology lessons at the best of times – much less when they are delivered by an Equity card-carrying voice-over parasite who had a spare couple hours to earn the annual national wage in Mozambique. What the people of Mbobo think of someone showing the soles of their feet or baring their arse in public couldn’t matter less to me.
I’m funny that way. I don’t give a flying fuck what my bank does when it’s abroad provided there is money in my cashpoint when I visit it and they’ve successfully cleaned off last night’s urine and vomit from the screen (yes, I could have found a public toilet but I regard HSBC as my one-stop shop for all my needs and will continue to do so until I’m told otherwise).
"Hole-in-one" indeed. Rumour has it that HSBC took their cultural sensitivity to the Orient cue from Bez from Happy Mondays: "I didn’t like that fookin’ Tokyo, yeah – it was full of Chinese."
They’re twisting my melons, man.