Thursday, 13 November 2014

EPSRC Christmas Ad Launched

Pigeon holes stuffed full of rejection letters
Hot on the heels of the mawkish Christmas adverts launched by John Lewis and Sainsbury's, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has unveiled its bid to capture yuletide hearts.

Their advert centres on a lonely applicant attempting to get funding from the notoriously cold-hearted Council.


The first scene takes place in the Spring. We see the applicant rushing to his pigeon hole as the trees outside are beginning to bud. Inside there's an outcome letter with a Swindon postmark. He rips it open to find a rejection letter inside. A lonesome tear rolls down his despairing cheek, and a kindly PVC Research puts a comforting arm around him.

The next scene is the summer. The trees outside are in full leaf. Students are throwing mortarboards in the air. Once again, the applicant rushes to his pigeon hole, only to find another rejection letter. A kindly PVC puts an arm around the applicant, whose upper lip is quivering with desolation.

The action moves to the autumn. The trees outside are losing their leaves, and freshers walk up and down looking cheerful. The applicant rushes to his pigeon hole, pulls out another Swindon-based letter, and rips it open. It's another rejection. A kindly PVC puts an arm around the applicant, mouthing 'maybe next time.'

The final scene is winter. Snow flurries swirl outside the window. For the last time the applicant, wearing a scarf and tweed jacket with leather elbow pads, runs to his pigeon hole.There's another EPSRC envelope. With trembling hands he opens it. The Coldplay-ish soundtrack reaches a crescendo. He pulls out the letter, and the camera focuses in on the writing, which reveal the words: 'You're blacklisted. Stop pestering us.' The PVC puts a kindly arm around the applicant and hands him a P45.

The camera pulls away and the scene fades into darkness, and the heartwarming words fill the screen:
'Yeah, so what. It's Christmas. We're dealing in science, not miracles. Get over it.' The EPSRC logo then appears, with the strapline underneath: 'in an uncertain world, you can depend on us (to reject you).'

It warms the cockles of your heart. Rumour has it that the AHRC are currently working on an advert that features Father Christmas swearing at the performers in a nativity play, screaming 'just because your parents like it, it doesn't make it practice-as-research!'

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