Theodore Roosevelt once said, "It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly..."
But when a critic turns combatant, that's when the fun begins. Fans of Mary Portas' last TV show, Mary Queen of Shops, will have seen the retail expert unpick countless business plans, rail against poor execution and bring many an entrepreneur to tears.
Now, Portas herself is in the hot seat. Her new retail concept is focussed on a sweet spot that she has long championed - mature women who aren't interested in throw-away fashion. But will it work?
Portas herself is sanguine on the subject. "I know I am risking criticism by starting my own venture," she says. "But isn't that what life is about? You either put your head above the parapet and some people have a little slap or some laugh with you and enjoy it with you. But if you don't put your head up there, how boring! And I am just not a safe person so you know, so what."
Launching a fashion business is always risky, but doing so in a recession..? Portas is going to have to use every trick in her arsenal to got a toe-hold in the market. Do we think she can do it? Definitely. Do you? Leave your comment below.
You can tune in to Channel 4's three-part fly-on-the wall series, Mary Queen of Frocks, next Tuesday (4th October).