It’s that time of year again when fans of the long wait gather their sausage rolls, screaming kids and sun cream and head for the country’s top queue attractions at theme parks. ‘There’s just something very British about being herded like sheep through narrow channels in the blistering heat at Thorpe Park,â€™ said father of five, Wayne Leech. â€˜The only downside is having to go on the bloody rides.â€™
Shane Smith agreed that the queues at Thorpe Park are the best place to commune with nature. â€˜The wasps this year are the best they’ve ever been. And the sweet scent of BO from the tattooed fat man can only be matched by the Jubilee Line at rush hour. It’s all made even better by the traffic jams getting in and out this place. We’ll definitely be coming back next year.â€™
In a groundbreaking scientific development â€“ which runs contrary to current cosmological orthodoxy that states that in the wake of the big bang a central point in an infinitely expanding three dimensional universe cannot exist â€“ physicists at Oxford University have broken ranks to confirm that there is in fact a centre of the universe and that it is Benjamin James Milton, an 18-month old toddler from Knutsford, Cheshire.
Professor Tyler Hoyle of the Oxford team explained that his department had been contacted by Sara and Philip Milton, Benjamin’s proud parents, who outlined the new theory in some detail. ‘Obviously we’re very busy here, but when Mrs Milton got us on the phone – up to a dozen times a day – to explain how bright Benjamin was for his age, and how sensitive he is to the world around him, we simply had to act,’ explained the Nobel Prize winning scientist, ‘Especially after Mr Milton got on the line to offer us a bit of guidance from his Nuffield Physics O Level book on the subject.’
The Miltons have now been presented with a certificate on Oxford University headed notepaper officially confirming the discovery, signed by Stephen Hawking whose handwriting, according to Mrs Milton, ‘is very legible, you know, considering…’. With the Oxford team now free to continue pondering the less significant mysteries of the cosmos, the Miltons are now producing multiple copies of the document to distribute to people including smokers standing within a 500 yard radius of the child, nearby tradespeople making noise at naptime, family friends hosting barbecues without considering the dietary requirements of the under-2s, work colleagues apparently happy with their own children, and anyone else who may have expressed any doubt that the universe revolves around ‘little Benjy’.
However, while the couple were obviously delighted about the confirmation from Oxford, there was disappointing news from the Vatican, where a spokesman for the pope dismissed Mr Milton’s argument that the child could even be the next Messiah. A personal letter from the Pontiff later explained that it will be the sign of the second coming of God incarnate when a child is born and the parents don’t have any sex at all before the birth, not after it.
The widely reported perception of ISIS as ‘more sophisticated than your average Jihadi movement’ received a further boost today with the so-called ‘Islamic Caliphate’ opening its first effigy superstore in Mosul under the ‘Effigy Warehouse’ brand.
The store’s business model recognises that middle class jihadis flowing in from across the globe have shifted the middle east effigy market away from the days of hastily sewn-together potato sacks with a crude face drawn on with marker pen. ‘The discerning jihadist now demands sophisticated models which stand out from the crowd, and even utter a few lines of heresy as they are consumed in the flames,’ said the store manager.
Going under the slogan ‘Allah’s favourite effigy supplier’ and challenging anyone to disprove it, the store offers a wide variety of styles and price options, from ‘Basic Westerner’ to ‘Deluxe Presidential’, all guaranteed highly accurate and combustible. They also stock a range of international flags, Danish Muhammad cartoons, false god statuettes, Salmon Rushdie books and blasphemous tea-towels.
The store manager said: ‘Business is excellent. The first day was pandemonium, and though sales dipped over the next few days, the in-built obsolescence of our products means those customers will all be back again by the end of the week – Inshallah!’
‘Our ‘infidel variety packs’ are proving particularly popular, as is our ‘buy an American, get a Zionist free’ offer. We also have an extensive library of flammable, inflammatory literature, so no-one needs to arrive at the book-burning party with the same title as everyone else,’ he added.
The heretic effigy industry has been growing since the 1979 Iranian Revolution, and in 1983 overtook the Guy Fawkes effigy industry in turnover – though some have suggested this was more to do with Guy Fawkes industry’s refusal to adapt to inflation and insistence that its outlets retain a traditional but unrealistic pricing structure.
But in Mosul the future seems bright, with the store’s backers in Qatar delighted that their investment was being handsomely repaid by the hordes of Jihadis in the shop spending money that had also been given to them by Qatar. It’s been such a success that the Qataris are now considering building a football-themed store in Geneva, filled with effigies of anyone who disagrees with their other favourite acronym, FIFA.
Jack Hammer and his partner Jill are suing NHS 111 for â€˜wholly inadequate adviceâ€™ following a fall they had while collecting water near their idyllic rural home.
â€˜We went up the hill to fetch a pail of water,â€™ Jack explained, â€˜when I fell back down, fracturing the crown of my head in the process. When Jill rang NHS 111, they suggested bed rest and patching me up with vinegar and brown paper. The next day I learned from my GP that this would not have helped in the slightest.’
Jill added that this was the second serious failing from the NHS after a nurse had told Jack he would be more nimble if he jumped over a candlestick. â€˜We had to get him new boxers after that.â€™ An NHS 111 spokesperson declined to comment for reasons of patient confidentiality but said that we all fall down.
As Britain and other industrialised nations become increasingly hooked on solar energy, our reliance on the sun could see the country sucked into unwinnable wars, and sleepwalking into the dark ages, claimed controversial author Tony Harrington at the launch of his new book, â€˜The Nights are Drawing Inâ€™.
A backlash against alternative energy sources is now being predicted as newspapers have been quick to leap on the claims of the book. The Daily Mail has been accused of running a smear campaign against the sun, linking it to causing cancer, and the red top tabloids are fostering international tension by declaring that Germany is secretly knitting a towel the size of the Costa del Sol in preparation for a pre-dawn raid to claim huge swathes of the continentâ€™s solar resources for themselves.
The Harrington research flies in the face of accepted thinking, and the latest declarations from government that alternative sources of fuel are a vital weapon in minimising the countryâ€™s reliance on external suppliers. Conservative Energy Minister Greg Barker has recently declared that, â€˜The UK must never again find itself in a position as it has with oil supplies in the past, where its economic well-being is in the hands of shifty nations with dictator-led crackpot governments â€” like the Scots.â€™ However, Harrington has painted a nightmare scenario where Britain, short-sightedly expecting the supplies of currently plentiful sunshine to last forever, finds itself in social and economic turmoil â€˜sometime around October when the clocks go backâ€™.
â€˜Availability of sunlight will dwindle, yet the demand for electricity among the latte-swilling iPad-using political elite in London will continue to rise unabated,â€™ warns Harrington. â€˜This could spark social unrest — and potentially civil war — after an invasion to â€˜liberateâ€™ Eastbourne, based solely on spurious claims that the sunny seaside town could unleash a train full of pensioners on the capital in less than 45 minutesâ€™.
But Harrington says that there is still hope, as a rising number of households elect to build mini oil refineries in their own gardens. However, the conclusions of his â€˜entirely independentâ€™ research suggest that this will not be enough and that ultimately â€˜some brave multinational corporation will have to step up, and lead the fight against the dangerously powerful force of the elements, and their track record of hostility towards these isles.â€™
Harringtonâ€™s book, featuring a foreword by Tony Hayward, is now available in all good petrol station forecourts.
Hat-tip to rickwestwell
Officers tasked with investigating 73-year-old pop icon Sir Cliff Richard have removed several ‘inappropriate images’ during a house raid in Berkshire on Thursday, Thames Valley Police have revealed. It’s been reported that over fifty prospective images for a planned 2015 calendar were discovered on hard-drives and mobile phone devices during the dawn bust, some of which have already been classed as ‘Category A’ and ‘totally gross’.
‘Vulnerable and unloved middle-aged housewives up and down the country would not have stood a chance, had these images got out there’, stressed attending officer PC Briggs, who assisted the Thames Valley force. He continued: ‘It looks as though we arrived just at the right time. We found some sample recordings for a potential comeback album too. Now if they got out there, God only knows how many lives and Christmas Days would have been ruined – it’s just not worth thinking about’.
Sir Cliff, currently holidaying in Barbados, said: ‘These images were never intended to be released. They were for personal use only, and no harm was intended when they were taken. I’m more than happy to never take any again and just continue my usual form of abuse, namely audio abuse, which will continue as normal next year at Wimbledon, and in your car when you’re stuck in traffic and the bastard radio won’t switch off.’
Sergeant Denis Cooper, who led the raid, said: ‘As you can imagine, some officers have been offered the best counselling available. They are trained for this sort of stuff, but there isn’t much that can prepare you for viewing an image of a shirtless Cliff Richard gyrating around a Christmas tree, which was just one of many unspeakably awful images we found in a folder labelled ‘December Collectionâ€™.’
He added: ‘One officer, who is a close friend of mine, was the first to view some of Cliff’s sample images for April 2015, crudely entitled ‘Hot Cross Buns’. I don’t know what it was that he saw, but he’s not spoken to anyone since. He was just two days away from retirement.’
In a bid to make the forthcoming debate between Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling more interesting to viewers outside Scotland, the BBC has announced that the debate over the pros and cons of Scottish independence will incorporate a bake-off.
A war of words has already broken out, with the Better Together campaign, which is making a spotted dick, arguing that Salmondâ€™s appeal to patriotic fervour by making a try of shortbread â€˜lacks a Plan Bâ€™. Meanwhile, the Yes campaign has accused them of scaremongering as there is no danger of shortbread running out in the next 30 years.
However, the BBC has abandoned the idea of a Splash!-style dive off in the third debate after concerns that the sight of Alex Salmond and Eric Pickles speedos would have an adverse impact on voter turnout.
The Edinburgh Fringe Festival has been exposed as an elaborate hoax invented to make everyone else feel slightly irritated and inferior for missing out on all the fun.
For years, newspaper supplements and arts programmes have featured extensive coverage of the brilliant comedy acts emerging from the fringe, while other reviewers described how they were locked in a pub all night witnessing impromptu improvisations from Eddie Izzard teaming up with Ricky Gervais and Ben Stiller.
â€˜None of it ever happenedâ€¦â€™ confessed Festival organiser Alistair Lorimer. â€˜It was just a wheeze to get our own back on London. Sure, thereâ€™s a military tattoo and some blokes in kilts playing bagpipes, but everyone who comes up has always been happy to go along with the huge comedy festival lie, so they can be really smug when they get back to work.â€™
One West Country comedy fan was delighted at the news. â€˜Every August we have to read about this massive party that we are not invited to’, said 19 year old Sarah Curtiss from Dawlish in Devon. â€˜It always really pisses me off. Now I learn that was the whole point.â€™
TV producers, journalists and media executives have received countless paid holidays in the historic city under the pretence of â€˜keeping their finger on the pulseâ€™ or â€˜looking for new talentâ€™. And yet every year they would come back and give a new radio or TV series to the biggest name on the London comedy circuit. â€˜You think someone would have suspected something earlier,â€™ said Mr Lorimer.
However none of the journalists or TV executives who have regularly boasted about the wonders of the Edinburgh Festival were available for comment. â€˜Theyâ€™ve all gone off to something called the Seychelles Film Festival, apparently.’
In a move designed to avoid discontent among fans and shareholders, Manchester United officials have taken the unprecedented decision to ban tablets, laptops and anything else that might bring about access to the league table from within the hallowed portals Old Trafford.
Instead, fans will be treated to calming music, pastel-shaded kits and Louis van Gaal dressed as Sir Matt Busby. The club has claimed it is merely reacting to a security threat, that 75,000 United fans may spontaneously combust if they are to go another season driving all the way from Surrey to watch the team play badly and win no silverware.
â€˜The problem with last year was not our inability to win, it was that the other teams created an unfair comparison,â€™ said Sir Bobby Charlton. â€˜We just don’t need any reminding about our neighbours in blue. Your average United fan would much prefer to stay in 1999, enjoying the treble and imagining the sexually peccadilloes of George Michael and Monica Lewinsky, while listening to Celine Dion sing My Heart Will Go On.
Embracing the North Korean model of sporting denial, psychologists have suggested delusions of grandeur are preferable to the grim reality of seeing Marouane Fellaini and Tom Cleverly fall over their own shadows. To prolong the psychosis, players will be forced to wear face masks of the main contributors to Unitedâ€™s bygone era of success, with Robin van Persie as Eric Cantona, Michael Carrick as Bryan Robson and Wayne Rooney as Eamonn Holmes.
Tannoy announcers at Old Trafford will now only read out half-time results from the Ferguson years and everyone will be hypnotised into believing David Moyes is still at Everton. While Greater Manchester Police have said they were not involved in the ban decision, they have admitted that everyone would be safer in Manchester if they immersed themselves in Friends box sets and imagined a time before Olly Murs had declared himself a fan.