You can't win, can you. You deliver what you naively think is the killer blow, pointing out the admittedly obvious contradiction between Bristol's parallel promotion of consumerism and environmentalism, and what do they do? They don't see problems, merely opportunities, and it seems that I did no more than supply them with Bristol's USP in the global tourism market place - we are to be promoted as a 'contradiction'.
In the amoral world of PR and marketing anything goes if it delivers the bottom line, in this case tourist Euros. Cuba has long been successfully promoted as a land of contradictions so why not Bristol? It taps into a fundamental of human nature - we all want to have our cake and eat it. A living contradiction offers the cake both ways while relieving the recipient of the moral dilemma - just blame it on your host's contradictory nature.
Fly over to Bristol, indulge in some luxury shopping (now the £ is so cheap), balance it with a bit of green gesturing, preferably by hiring a bike to pootle around Harbourside, popping into various trendy bars and cafes en route, and then put the perversity of it all down to Bristol's quaintly contradictory nature. Guilt-free self indulgence - just what the modern world craves (and not just the modern world - from the days of pilgrimages and crusades, tourism has always been tied up with assuaging our sense of guilt about our own contradictions).
A few more contradictory gems from the same PR puffery
- "Transport is eco-friendly with the bicycle a popular choice..."
- "Bristol Airport is fast expanding, flying to more than 70 destinations.."
- "Bristol is becoming one of Europe's darlings and the mot du jour for 2009."