Junior Apprentice: Week Three

Hello all! Phew. I’ve just walked through the door. What’s been happening so far? What do you mean ‘you should know, you’re the one meant to be doing a live blog?’ Pah, some help you are.

6am, Islington. The phone rings. Wait- wasn’t it 7am last week? I was right, they are getting them up progressively earlier. I look forward to the point where the candidates start having to rely exclusively on high strength energy drinks to get through each task, until they eventually start hallucinating and throwing cheese and camping equipment at each other.

They’re on their way to meet Lurdshugga for another tenuous briefing. This time, it’s at the HQ of the world’s leading crystal brand:  “It’s a glittering empire of cut glass,” gibbers Voiceover Man excitedly.

What has decorating cupcakes got to do with Swarovski crystal? Are they crystal cupcakes? Because that might constitute some kind of health and safety hazard.

9:10 – the proto Alans are trying to come up with a cupcake theme. Fashion, says Hannah. Tim dodges the project manager role because he doesn’t like cooking, then puts himself in the kitchen (says Nick). What an Anker(s).

Zoe’s team opt for a romantic “I heart x” type theme. She thinks there’s no room for excuses in business. What if all your stationery was eaten by a shark just before you were about to do some kind of vital sales pitch? Or if a rogue eagle deleted a vital PowerPoint presentation? You never know, Zoe. You never know.

9:15pm: Adam is decorating  cupcakes almost as well as he put up that tent last week. Which is to say- not at all. His ‘I (heart) yous’  look more like ‘I (squashed beetle) worm’. Which is great for the hedgehog market, but not for humans unfortunately.

Scottish Girl and Dairylea head (Team FashionCake) are wandering round London researching cupcake prices. Regular cupcakes are £2.20, she says. But personalised ones cost £3. THREE POUNDS? You could buy very cheap wine for that, then personalise it by crudely daubing your beloved’s name on the bottle with tipp-ex.

I should go on the Apprentice.

On Zoe’s team, Emma and Adam seem to think that they should buy 800 cakes. Zoe and Arjun think this is STUPID and tell them 400 is more like it. Not sure where they’re getting these figures- possibly Imaginary Google, like most Apprentice candidates.

In the other team, project leader Rhys (aka Dairylea Head) and Scottish Girl seem to think green cupcakes with a raspberry on and some glitter simply REEK of fashion. Yes – in fact I saw Lady Gaga wearing an outfit just like that the other day.

I’m not kidding. I actually did.

In Team Romance, Adam’s not happy with the ‘400 cakes’ decision. “If we had more cakes, we’d make more money”, he says, forgetting that a) their ‘romance cakes’ look inutterably shit, as if a dying spider had crawled over the surface and written “eI lurghbve yiou” across the surface in its own blood. And also b) cakes go off.

9:23- Team FashionCake and Team Romance pitch up at Selfridges, squashing cakes recklessly and generally making a bit of a scene. Rhys can’t carry two trays of cakes because he’s ‘not tall enough.’

Um, er. Right. Ok.

Voiceover man reminds us that they need to ‘add value to the cupcakes’ by writing things like ‘I LUV U MUM’ and ‘TWILite Is Gr8’ on them. The customers don’t seem to be biting, perhaps because they’re not utter dafties. If they wanted to be robbed by a bunch of teenagers they could just go and hang out in the East End wearing a bum bag and a Union Jack t-shirt, then ask someone the way to the ‘castle’ in an American accent.

Over in the other team, Zoe is dressed as a cupcake. Yes. She’s a giant cake. A stupid massive cake. I think it might actually be one of Lady Gaga’s Grammy cast-offs.

Team RomanceCakeZoe aren’t charging more for personalising their cakey offerings. Hmmm, suspect I see a grilling in the boardroom for her. Or a ‘gentle baking’ at least. Possibly at about 220 degrees for about 40 minutes (30 for fan assisted).

Emma: “Tim, don’t make a mess of them, professionals don’t”

Tim: “We’re not professionals”.

Yes Tim, but you’re charging PROFESSIONAL prices. D’oh.

In the other team, Adam has been asked to write ‘Happy Birthday’ on one cake and ‘Duck’ on another.

“So is it ‘happy birthday duck?” he asks. So that’s how Cake Wrecks happen.

9:29pm Fast forward a little while and Adam’s taken half an HOUR to ice those two cakes while a Very Angry businessman stomps around angrily. Karren points out that if he keeps on at that pace, it will take him 26 hours to ice them all. Perhaps he can’t spell ‘duck?’

The leader of FashionCake, Rhys, has been cut out of the whole process in his team and has been turned into some kind of cake courier, walking dolefully up and down the back alleys of Selfridges with a single box in his hand. Poor Rhys. I find him positively adorable- It’s like the Dejected Snoopy Walk, as copied by Michael Cera on Arrested Development:

The lunchtime rush is over and the cake sales dry up. Hannah comes up from the kitchen to join the stall in order to pimp the fashioncakes. Rhys tells her to call them ‘the ultimate accessory’. I think he should add ‘THAT YOU CAN EAT!” in order to distinguish it from the other, boring, more expensive and frankly inedible accessories on sale around them.

“I want a Tiffany bracelet.”

“Of course ma’am. That will be £500.”

(picks up bracelet, turns it over thoughtfully)

“Can you eat it?”


“Fuck it then. I’ll have a cake instead.”

“Ok your highness. You are the Queen after all.”

“Damn right I am. I’m the QUEEN. Suck my crown.”

Ahem, sorry, went off track a bit there.

The pressure’s mounting. Both teams only have a short time till the end of trading. Cakes are hurled willy nilly in the face of shoppers. “Cake!” they cry. “Buy our cake!”

But 8pm comes and neither team have sold out. Apparently, if you go to Selfridges you usually want some tights, or a skirt, or some kind of expensive Queen-bracelet. Not a cupcake with ‘Flaaaa blah blah squiggle’ hastily written on it.

9.37- In the boardroom, Adam’s illness seems to have brought out LurdShugga’s paternalistic side. He boots out Adam for being ill and sends him back to his mum and dad’s for a Lemsip, a loving hug and (hopefully) a lesson in How To Put Up A Tent. That’s a bit crap though, isn’t it? I hope he at least gets some kind of commemorative pen.

“Unfortunately, you’ve lost one of your colleagues. But that’s life,” says LurdShugga. Gosh, I really hope he never has to tell a small child their dog has died.

“Right kid, Rover’s not coming back. ‘E’s dead. But that’s life, innit. Now go and sell me some cakes. And stop snivelling!”

He then turns to team RomanceCake (aka VanillaImpulse, aka Revolution), who even after cutting the numbers to 400 didn’t sell all their cakes. Shugga thinks that was still far too many- they’d have needed to ice one every 30 seconds to get through them. He pulls them up for not charging extra for personalisation. Zoe’s usually composed ice-queen face trembles slightly.

Team FashionCake (aka Puberty, aka Instinct) are next up. Rhys comes across well, and recounts their market research which led them to decide to charge more for the personalised cakes.

RomanceCake have made a small profit of £15….but shockingly, despite their market research and cake-accessorising- Rhys’s team have made a loss! Oh noes! They’ll be back in the boardroom in a bit.

The winning team get to have lunch with Richard Branson. That’s a prize?! I’d rather have lunch with a jar of Branston pickle. On the central reservation of a motorway. In Slough. In the rain…..oh, you get my point.

Over in the Cafe of Eternal Woe, they stir their oily looking lattes and look despondent. But who will follow Ill Adam and be sent back to their Mummies and Daddies? WHO? My money’s on Tim, who can never be arsed doing, well, pretty much anything ever. I think he just signed up to the programme to meet girls…

9.45pm- the boardroom. Everyone’s blaming Rhys but LurdShugga and Nick blame the selling. Or lack of it, rather. Scottish Lass (sorry- still haven’t caught her name. I’ll call her Janette Krankie for now) is getting a mild ovening. About 180 degrees, I’d say.

Rhys says no one was behind him. They were- they were behind him mocking his Dairylea shaped head and constant blushing. Then pinning ‘kick me’ notes to his back.

Kirsty! That’s the Scottish girl’s name. Excellent. Although I’m still going to use Janette Krankie.

Rhys brings Tim ‘Child-With-A-Beard’ Ankers and Hannah ‘No Nickname’ Insertsurnamehere with him into the boardroom.

I think Tim should be evicted from the Big Shugga House, but I’d like Hannah to go because she’s dull and therefore harder to mock. And I do so love to mock. I mock therefore I am. Also, I can’t think of a nickname for her which is annoying. Can you? Answers on a postcard to the usual address.

Hannah thinks the Shugganator shouldn’t fire her because she’s determined and passionate. Apprentice candidates NEVER say that. I’m literally 111% sure that’s the first time I’ve ever heard that in a boardroom. Literally.

Poor little Rhys is wibbling and shaking. He’s a sweetie. LurdShugga thinks he has fire in his belly. Yes people, we’ve learnt ANOTHER euphemism for ‘sheer panic’ this week. Fire. Use it well.

But did Lurdshugga mean fire, or FIRE….d? Because he is. Fired, that is.

Bye Rhys! I’ll miss your oddly shaped head and your bright red cheeks.

Just six kittens remain to be drowned in the Apprentice Barrel. Who will win? LurdShugga decides. Aided by two vampiric aides and a team of note-taking production staff.

Right, better go now. I didn’t feed the cat when I came in and she’s now rebelliously trying to eat anything in sight. My leg. Some Ryvita. A plant. A glitter covered ‘fashion cupcake’, etc.



About Hilary Wardle
Hilary is a freelance journalist and copywriter who writes for a wide range of websites, magazines and newspapers, including Buzzfeed, MSN, The Poke, Chortle, the Guardian and the Independent. She specialises in arts and entertainment, comedy, video games and viral content. Contact her at Hilary3@gmail.com.

12 Responses to Junior Apprentice: Week Three

  1. ladyblahblahs says:

    Rhys really is a more annoying, slightly posher version of Darren from ‘enders isn’t he? I’d love to wipe that sneer off his face (even if he is young enough to be my son… nearly).

  2. ladyblahblahs says:

    you could buy very cheap wine for that, then personalise it by crudely daubing your beloved’s name on the bottle with tipp-ex. I should go on the Apprentice. << they're not old enough to buy wine! But think my OH would rather a bottle of thunderbird than a cupcake too.

  3. Swineshead says:

    Dairylea head. I don’t know why, but that seems to work on multiple levels, none of which I can pinpoint.

    • ladyribenaberet says:

      I did pause at the whole concept of mocking a teenager’s appearance, but saying someone has a slightly triangular, cheese flavoured head isn’t particularly hurtful. At school I was nicknamed ‘chewbacca’ because my mum wouldn’t let me shave my legs. And I got over it! *twitches*

  4. fourstar says:

    I did chuckle at “Suck my crown”.

    Other than that, I was playing cricket this evening so I missed the whole ridiculous caboodle. Thank you for summing it up so succinctly. Again.

  5. Mads says:

    Did no one else notice Zoe professing her love of a particular powdery illegal substance??

  6. Brennig says:

    We missed it this week so this amusing dose of mocking bile is doubly welcome. Thanks. 🙂

  7. Apprenticles says:

    I’ve only just got around to catching up with your weekly summary Ribs – thanks, as usual.

    Did you note the speed with which Adam vacated the boardroom when he was let go? The poor little fucker couldn’t wait to get out of there and back to his “barra” — camping goods, get yer camping goods ere!

    What was all that grooming that Sugar did before he sacked Wedgie? — Rhys, I think yer goddit inside yer, I really do .. yuv got fire in yer belly, fer sure .. Rhys yor a very special person – don’t ever forget that, I said it … yor a very special man … etc

    Which is more than can be said for Pubic Pete sitting next to him with his man-child beard. He already has one of the finest pairs of sloping shoulders known to man.

    As for Janette Krankie, so far she has been pretty quiet, but I sense an air of quiet competence — I bet the helmet-haired proto-middle-manager has one of those polished leather satchels with backpack straps to carry all her books to school. I’m backing her to win.

  8. kate h says:

    Does anyone else reckon that Rhys looks like what you’d get if David Cameron mated with ALF?

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