The column that maintains that any resemblance between it and real life is purely coincidental
READER: Isn’t it great that the new Doctor Who is a woman?
MYSELF: Yes, in the same way I think it is great that Popeye’s girlfriend Olive Oyl, Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter books and a host of other fictional characters are “women”. Don’t you have anything better to do?
READER: Typical! Just the reaction I expected. You really have a hard time getting into the spirit of the Zeitgeist don’t you?
MYSELF: If by “the spirit of the Zeitgeist” you mean the serious discussion by emotionally stunted adults of material stuffed by its writers with simplistic notions of “social issues” and primarily designed for the entertainment of children, then yes, I do.
RIVAL PIER PROPOSAL CAUSES STIR
Vladimir Nokov, a mystery businessman with “no connection to the Russian Mafia”, has submitted plans to build a brand new second pier in Hastings which, he says, will “knock the other one into a cocked hat”. Over 5 kilometres in length and 1,000 metres wide, the ambitious structure will house, according to the billionaire’s blueprint, a helicopter pad, a runway for private jets, 500 luxury log cabins featuring sauna facilities, nail bars, vape shops and affordable junk food, as well as responsible gambling facilities for all the family and a self-service coin-operated money laundrette. “This is going to be the mother of all piers,” said the oligarch, “I wouldn’t be surprised if it won an award”.
A council spokesperson warned however: “A pier of this length is highly likely to interfere with shipping in the English Channel. Mr. Nokov may be a highly respected member of the domiciled kleptocracy, but this does not exempt him from UK planning regulations.” adding, “We accept that 2,000 life-sized radio-controlled animals, including a herd of stampeding elephants, will be a huge visitor attraction, but would point out that they may raise a number of health and safety issues”.
Issue 666 of Witch, the consumer magazine dedicated to occult-based mumbo-jumbo, has a feature on Hastings inventor Professor Gordon Thinktank, which includes a recommendation that all black cats be fitted with his latest innovation, an anti-bad luck device dubbed
The Cat-Nav. The satellite-linked helmet automatically detects when a stroller’s path is likely to be crossed and sends an electronic image of a plump, delicious mouse directly into the cat ‘s brain. This distracts the animal, allowing the superstitious walker to take evasive action. The inventor is also, according to Witch, working on a ladder which automatically folds up when anyone attempts to walk under it.
QUID QUO PRO
Your legal questions addressed by Justice Hyphen-Hyphen QC & Bar (struck off)
Dear Your Worship
As a one-man pantomime swan act, I implore you to settle this question once and for all. Are pantomime swans required to conform to the same Equity regulations as pantomime horses? I mean, does there have to be one small actor in the front and another one in the back? I enclose a photograph of me in my one-man-operated swan costume, once described as “more swan-like than the real thing”. Thanks to intense union pressure, I now find myself effectively blacklisted in the pantomime swan community.
I am sorry to hear of your employment difficulties, but as a matter of health and safety, Equity rule 2177114b specifies plainly that there should at all times be two small actors inside every pantomime swan, (see Quigley vs Theatre Royal Doncaster 1948), principally so that the one in the rear can act as a guard.
Dear Your Honour,
Is it true that if you are bitten by, or receive a severe scratch from the claws of a badger, you will eventually turn into a badger? If so, where would one stand, legally?
An interesting question, which immediately reminds me of the famous precedent of Schultz v Stott (Nottingham Magistrate’s Court 1993). After being bitten by a badger, Darren Schultz woke up next morning with the overwhelming notion that he was a badger. With the aid of hair dyes and several nose operations, he was eventually able to go and live in the woods, and was accepted by the badger community. During a subsequent court appearance after his arrest for causing a nuisance in the garden of Willie Stott, a former neighbour, his defence council claimed that since he now lived in the woods and foraged for insects and the occasional earthworm, and furthermore had been cautioned on four occasions for urban bin raiding, he should be classed as a badger. One witness for the prosecution swore under oath that Mr. Schultz had given TB to one of his cows. The magistrate, former dairy farmer Wilhelmina Salamander would have none of this, ruling that becoming like a badger was not the same as becoming a badger, and ordered the defendant to be culled.
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