Ignorance is Bliss – All Cock, No Bull

What’s the big deal with ‘antiques’ ‘dealer’ Kate Bliss (née Alcock)? Is she the new Carol Vorderman, some kind of so-called ‘thinking man’s totty’ for daytime TV viewers?

There’s a reason I ask… Some time in 2011, I banged out an off-the-cuff blog post about daytime TV show Secret Dealers, in which I commented on the absurdity of the show’s title in relation to its actual premise. There was a brief flurry of comments, primarily attacking my flippant criticism and largely missing the point, as is usual. After a few days, all fell quiet and like pretty much everything else I post, it sunk without trace – until a few days go, when suddenly hits on my blog skyrocketed. All the hits were on this singe post. This has now continued for the best part of a week.

This was unexpected, and I was compelled to undertake some cursory research into what may have prompted this upsurge in my post’s popularity. Had she died? Thankfully, no. Divorced? Not as far as I could tell. Given birth again? Nothing to suggest as much. In fact, news on Mrs Bliss is scant, with little in circulation that’s later than 2010, and precious little on her painfully sparse Wikipedia entry (not that I can talk. I don’t even merit a Wikipedia entry).

People are asking – and I know this because my analytics tell me so – ‘why did kate bliss leave secret dealers’. I don’t know. I don’t care. My blog does not have the answers. They’re asking ‘when did kate bliss leave secret dealers’. I don’t know. I don’t care. My blog does not have the answers. They’re also simply searching for ‘secret dealers kate bliss’. Why? What is wrong with these people? Do they have some sort of thing for slightly bug-eyed, big-chinned bottle blondes in their late 30s, with an Oxford education and detailed knowledge of antique jewellery, in particular silver? I don’t know. I don’t care. My blog does not have the answers. She’s certainly no Catherine Southon. So what’s the deal? I don’t know. I don’t care. My blog does not have the answers.

 

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Kate Bliss. No, really, she’s all yours mate.

 

But I do have questions. Really. I mean, TV career (such as it is) aside, she’s clearly doing ok. She has her own firm for a start, and the media coverage she’s received in recent years can only have boosted its profile (even when her estimates have proven wildly inaccurate. She’s invariably closer to the mark than Flog It! host Paul Martin, who’s completely fucking useless). How else do you account for her company’s fees (which are anything but bargain (hunt) basement)?

  • Hourly rate                 £140+VAT

  • Minimum fee              £150+VAT

  • Travel expenses         40pence/mile +VAT or public transport at cost +VAT

Guess what? I don’t know. I don’t care. My blog does not have the answers.

 

And if you’re loving my work, there’s more of the same (only different) at Christophernosnibor.co.uk

Hiding in Plain Sight: So, About These Bargain-Hunting ‘Secret’ Dealers…?

So, the premise of the ‘hit’ ITV1 show Secret Dealers is – and please, correct me if I’m wrong – that householders apply to be on the show, and, if selected, three antiques dealers rock up (with a camera crew and host Kate Bliss, who previously appeared on Bargain Hunt and Flog It!). Then, while the householders are out (presumably they’re taken for a meal or something by some TV people and transported back when the word is given, rather than simply being booted out of their house and told to come back in a few hours), check out the contents of the house. Anything the dealers like the look of, they’ll pop a card next to, with the amount they’re offering for said item written inside. Each dealer is identified by the colour of their cards.

When the householders return, the host takes them round and shows them what’s been offered for each item. Where multiple offers have been made, the householder can sell to the highest bidder, or keep the item if they think it’s worth more. The dealer who buys the most wins, and the householder ‘wins’ the proceeds of the sales, and winds up with a house stripped of any items of value.

Fine. So it’s a glorified house clearance, daytime TV style, and everyone loves it because it’s got real people and everyone think they too might have some rare antique bric-a-brac lurking in the loft. I get that.

But where’s the secret? The title implies they’re undercover or otherwise anonymous, like the ‘secret’ millionaires and the ‘secret’ bosses. How are the dealers remotely secret when the householders know they’re coming – because they invited them – and it’s not only revealed how much was offered for each item, but who made the offer? The dealers know they’re dealers, and all of the dealers know what the other two are up to. The only secret is that the dealers don’t know how much the others have offered… which is essentially how sealed bidding works. It doesn’t make the dealers secret, though, does it? No, only the bids.

The threadbare premise for an hour-long show is one thing, but the completely misleading title is quite another. But then, I suppose A Bunch of So-Called  Antiques Dealers Place First -Price Sealed Bids on Stuff to Fleece Idiot Members of the Public on TV in the Name of Cheap Entertainment doesn’t have the same ring to it.

 

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Kate Alcock – sorry, Bliss – being secretive, yesterday.

 

And if you’re loving my work, there’s more of the same (only different) at Christophernosnibor.co.uk