Major Sir Michael Parker, the man for so many years behind such enormous events as the Royal Tournament and other wonderful events that I remember from childhood, has just written his autobiography. In it he suggests eight essential rules for life:
‘One: have a very big idea — then double it.
‘Two: if it’s easy to do it’s not worth doing.
‘Three: if you’re 100 per cent certain it’s going to work perfectly you’re probably not being ambitious enough. Make it more complicated immediately.
‘Four: if given more than one option, always choose the most difficult one.
‘Five: never treat “no” as an acceptable answer.
‘Six: try not to tell people what is supposed to happen. Then they will not know when it hasn’t.’
‘Seven: always stand as close to the principal guests as possible, so you’ll be the first in with your excuses when things go wrong.
‘Eight: make it fun for as many people as possible.’
I rather like these and will bear them in mind next time I’m planning something…