Being the age I am I find I spend more of my leisure time with people at the elderly end of the age spectrum. One of the moral dilemmas this poses is what to do if you are enjoying a social event and one of your party keels over.
Fortunately, the answer was revealed this week, I read, by the good folk at Gala Bingo. An 86 year-old player fell ill whilst enjoying a game of housey-housey at the Gala Bingo hall in Crawley. Initially, proceedings were halted but play recommenced even as an ambulance arrived and paramedics tended to the woman.
According to the ever-caring Gala, such incidents happen quite often in bingo and the company’s policy is to carry on as normal.
So there we have it – check they are breathing, call an ambulance and get back to enjoying yourself. Another of life’s many dilemmas solved!
Turning to matters UKIP, surely this is the Question of the Week?
If you are forced to resign in humiliating circumstances for calling your party leader snarling, thin-skinned and aggressive, have you not just made your case?
Ukippers – don’t you just love them! The British political landscape would be all the poorer without them. Some of their highlights this year.
- The flooding and storms of last winter were divine retribution for gay marriage, according to David Silvester, a town councillor in Henley;
- Foreign aid, blustered former UKip MEP Godfrey Bloom, was being sent to bongo bongo land;
- According to Kerry Smith, a former candidate for the constituency of South Basildon and East Thurrock, some of his party members were poofters;
- Women have no ambition, according to another UKip MEP, because babies get in the way;
- And, talking of babies, ostentatious breast-feeding in Claridges of all places really got on Nigel’s tits
- Natasha Bolter’s academic qualifications proved not to be what they were claimed to be and it seems Roger Bird didn’t;
- Too many Romanians with their bullock carts are blocking Britain’s major arterial motorways, according to Nigel. Can’t say I’ve noticed them myself.
I don’t know where Ukippers went for their pre-internet porn but they seem to have this thing about homosexuals and animals. According to Julia Gasper (great name!), former chair of the Oxford branch, some homosexuals prefer sex with animals and this week John Rees-Evans, a candidate for Cardiff South and Penarth, claimed that a gay donkey tried to have sex with his horse.
To think they may hold the balance of power!
Nigel Farage may be on to something, much as it pains me to say it. These pesky Eastern Europeans are getting everywhere and causing mayhem as this story from the German city of Dresden illustrates.
Siemens had a bit of an Elk and Safety issue last Monday when an elk, thought to be two to three years old, got stuck in the glass enclosed foyer of their in-house café. The elk had been spotted earlier in the city in the car park of a shopping centre but because of the crowds that its appearance attracted bolted towards Siemens. After unsuccessfully trying to coax the animal out, officials from the nearby zoo had to shoot it with a tranquilliser gun before hoisting it out of the narrow doorway.
The elk, weighing some 800 kg – that would have kept the office workers in steak for a few days – is said to have remained calm throughout its ordeal. It is thought to have come from the Czech republic or Poland which are nearby. Saxony is on a well-established migratory path.
Wonder if it is any good at plumbing!
In these Farageist times I am reluctant to indulge in national stereotyping but it cannot be denied that our friends from Germany are more than a little obsessed with the end product of what may be termed a nummer zwei. The normal toilet in Germany has a small shelf situated immediately below your posterior upon which your faeces lands. In my experience it requires a number of flushes before the contents land in the water and disappear down to God knows where. The reason for this design, I’m told, is to facilitate stool examination. Whilst this might have been a good idea in the days when public hygiene regimes were a little more primitive, it seems a little obsessive and, well, strange these days.
It is this obsession with examining their faeces which has led to a book by Giulia Enders entitled Darm mit Charme (Charming Bowels) topping the best-selling charts for paperbacks for around eight weeks and flying off the bookstore shelves like the proverbial off a shovel. It is a paean to all things related to the bowel and a hymn to defecation. For those of you who struggle with the German language you will be pleased to know that publishing house, Scribe, are rushing out an English translation.
The thesis of the book is that the gastrointestinal tract is not only the body’s most under-appreciated organ but is the brain’s most important adviser. As well as being rightly proud of and in awe of the complexity of our hearts and brains, we should celebrate the workings of our intestinal tubing. Few of us know (or, frankly, care) that it is the last 8 metres of our digestive tract that deals with faeces and it produces more than 20 kinds of hormones, contains over a thousand species of bacteria and is controlled by a nervous system that is almost as complex as the brain’s.
The appropriately named Enders argues that the health of our bowels could have a more direct influence on our mental wellbeing, our memory and our motivation than even our DNA. Instead of being embarrassed by a burp or a fart, we should celebrate the fact that the effort required to produce it would put the muscle control and co-ordination exhibited by a ballet dancer to shame. Overdoing the old steins of lager and bratwursts may result in an up-chucky but, again, we should marvel at the lengths our guts go to protect our well-being.
With such an evangelist for the gut it is not surprising that the book provides the diligent reader with some helpful advice. Apparently we should follow the Asians and crouch rather than sit whilst doing our business. Sitting merely prolongs the process and probably explains why afflictions such as piles and diverticulitis are more prevalent in Europe than in the Far East.
My researches have failed to uncover what a Romanian toilet looks like so I can’t decide which I would prefer to have being used next door to me. This book, however, has made me realise that there is more to the working of the body than meets the eye!