Striking a light of inspiration

2 Dec

IT’S afternoon conference in the Editor’s office and Big Bernard is going through the news list.

Big Bernard: “The next story: John Mutton, the local convenor of the Shoe-Heelers’ Union, has criticised the Chancellor’s latest austerity measures and said they’ve been drawn up on the back of a fag packet . . .”

Editor: “Whoa . . . whoa . . . Let’s just hold that there a minute. Seriously, did anyone anywhere ever draw up anything on the back of a fag packet? What a stupid thing to claim. It’s pathetic. Ridiculous.”

Assistant Editor: “Actually, I think you’ll find that the E-Type Jag was originally designed on the back of a fag packet.”

Editor: “Really?”

Deputy Editor: “And apparently the Supreme Court was designed on the back of a fag packet, as was the Welsh Assembly’s enterprise zone strategy, depending on who you believe.”

Editor: “Really?”

Assistant Editor: “And it’s a well-known fact that Professor Colin Pillinger designed the Beagle 2 Martian lander on the back of a beer mat.”

Editor: “Really?”

Big Bernard: “Hey Boss, why don’t you write about it in your next Letter From the Editor column – all the things that have been designed on the back of a fag packet?”

Editor: “Wow.”

Big Bernard: “Hey Boss, hey Boss. And why don’t you actually write the column ON THE BACK OF A FAG PACKET?”

Editor: “Wow. Yeh. What a great idea.”

Half an hour later, the Pork Chop is staring vacantly through the window near his desk when he sees the Editor disappear into the neighbouring tobacconist’s shop. He reflects on the power of the press and the giants who shape public opinion, the great names from the past who have wielded their pens and punched their keyboards to mould political policy and change the course of nations. And he decides it’s time for another cup of tea.

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