Bubbly talk looks only for girly clique

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 26 June, 2001, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 26 June, 2001, 12:00am

An interesting invitation was brought to our attention, but sadly Lai See's gender may preclude his attendance at what threatens to be a lively event.

Wine distributor Clicquot has invited reporters to a champagne breakfast at Petrus in the Island Shangri-La with Madame Cecile Bonnefond - the first female president of the company's champagne arm.

Being an eavesdropping waiter at this breakfast could be interesting as there 'will be an intimate discussion from a lifestyle and woman perspective'.

Ooooh, la la!!

'There will be plenty of champagne and lots of women's talk,' the invitation promises. So plenty of the former could help block out the latter.

The invitation comes at an interesting time for Clicquot, which has been battling a hoax e-mail campaign over the last few years. The hoax e-mail claimed that if the message was forwarded to 10 friends and Clicquot they could win bottles of champagne, The New York Times tells us.

Clicquot has posted a warning on its Web-site about the hoax e-mail and has started its own online game with real prizes.

One imagines the hoax e-mail will be a conversational topic over croissants and champagne. Lai See would love to discover the 'woman perspective' on this issue among many others - but figures he'll never find out.

Stroke of the pen: Desperate times often call for desperate measures, but in some cases a minor tweaking is all that is thought to be required.

The Chinese name of Pacific Century CyberWorks has four characters with two falling strokes in the centre of the last one.

Sharp-eyed reporters at the Apple Daily noticed that in recently unveiled displays of the CyberWorks logo these two strokes are now horizontal.

At CyberWorks' head office in Quarry Bay, both versions of the logo are used in the lobby.

Although CyberWorks would not confirm the reasons for the change, the paper speculated that it was because the falling strokes might be bringing bad luck to the firm's share price. CyberWorks shares closed at HK$2.325 last week compared to the peak of HK$28.50 last year.

The pronunciation of the character concerned also sounds like the English word 'fall'.

Yet Lai See feels it is going to take a lot more than the tweaking of calligraphy to rejuvenate CyberWorks' share price. It is not so much clutching at straws as clutching at strokes.

Background clanger: Business people are forever saying you can't transplant what works in overseas markets straight into Asia.

The same advice should be given to producers and directors of stage shows - and in particular Miss Saigon.

A recent member of the audience at the hit musical now playing at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre was bemused during one scene set in a Saigon bar.

A bunch of girls in the background of the bar were talking away - in Tagalog. The last time Lai See saw a war movie concerning Saigon it was in Vietnam rather than the Philippines.

The theatre company might be able to pull the wool over the eyes of audiences on Broadway and in the West End, but surely they need to get the right language in Asia.

David Evans is on holiday.

Graphic: whee26gbz

Graphic: pccw26gbz