Some years ago, NatWest ran an ad campaign in the UK bemoaning the fact that branches of other banks were closing and being replaced by trendy wine bars.
It struck me then – and it struck me again just now, for reasons which will soon become clear – that my worst nightmare would be to go for a drink with a bank.
I want my bank to be slightly removed; an upright custodian of my cash (or my overdraft, at any rate). Ideally, it would be a hushed temple to finance, with a marble floor, high ceilings and dark wood counters, behind which sober-suited bankers conducted their arcane banking business.
It wouldn’t be the desperately chummy, mildly sweaty follower of youthful social media mores that stalks me via the Royal Mail, email, phone (landline and mobile) and text.
And it certainly wouldn’t call me ‘mate’, which is what happened yesterday.
I don’t want to be your mate, bank. Instead, I want a mutually respectful relationship with a grown-up organisation.
So here’s what I suggest. I’ll carry on spending money like water, enabling you to make a healthy living by charging me for my profligacy. In return, you take the trouble to learn about me and my preferences as to communication channels.
And then, when you contact me with your latest tempting debt of the month or whatever, you make sure that you don’t keep asking me the same old questions over and over again.
Fair enough? Then I’ll drink to that – just not with you.