I just read this phrase in a local paper and I’m apoplectic with rage.
I sort of get the whole ‘bid’, ‘tot’, ‘axe’ thing, as short words save space. But ‘Eateries’? ‘Galore’? What sort of person writes this stuff? How do they sleep at night?
Or could it be that they have no idea? Could it be that local hacks actually talk like to each other in their newsrooms? Even at home?
Eateries Galore, starring two local tabloid journalists and their tots.
Hubby: Morning dear. Are the tots up?
Tragic mum-of-three: Not sure. I’ll launch a probe.
(Goes upstairs, returns)
Mum: They’ll be down in a min. They were engaged in an altercation, so I blasted them.
Hub: Ah. It’s always best to make a bid to quell a clash. I hope you vowed to slam them if they failed to quit their madcap stunts.
(Weather forecast on radio)
Mum: Sounds like we’re in for a cold snap and lots of the white stuff.
Hub: That will spark woe.
Mum: And ire.
Hub: Did the pundits predict it?
Mum: No. There’ll be fury at boffins.
Hub: Well, I hope there’s enough cash in the coffers to launch a raft of measures to rap them.
Mum: I’d certainly laud that, especially if it had a key plank.
(Noise of children upstairs)
Hub: Sounds like a crisis waiting to happen up there. But time will tell.
Mum: Yes. They’re trading barbs.
Hub: Should we initiate a charm offensive or a stinging rebuke?
Mum: That raises more questions than answers in the final analysis darling. At the end of the day, there’s ultimately a growing body of evidence that donning the mantle of discipline is, suffice it to say, ill-advised.
Hub: Have you been reading The Telegraph again? Be that as it may, I’d favour a hastily convened last-ditch effort to bring them to the table.
Mum: That’s big-hearted of you, but you’d just feed the frenzy we love to hate.
(Loud bangs upstairs)
Mum: What was that? Was it a firearm?
Hub: No. That’s just fevered speculation.
Mum: I’m not so sure. I feel a portrait is emerging. What if they come to an ignominious end?
Hub: They won’t. I’m cautiously optimistic. I know it’s oft-cited, but children have been chock-full with energy since time immemorial and they just like to vie.
(Sound of crackling flames upstairs)
Mum: That’s not a tot blaze, is it?
Hub: I wouldn’t dub it that. They’re just playing … in their inimitable style.
Mum: I suppose so. I just wish they wouldn’t have such a dizzying array of arguments, but we don’t have a silver bullet do we?
Hub: No. We don’t even have a panacea. But I do wish we could usher in a new era.
(Phone rings, mum answers)
Mum (speaking to caller): Well Debs, no wonder tongues are wagging and people have taken to Twitter in the wake of it. We’re a tightly knit community. I’d shroud it in secrecy if I were you. OK. Bye.
Hub: What’s up?
Mum: Petegate. Deb’s Pete’s been on another booze-fuelled romp.
Hub: What a love rat. Did he bed someone?
Mum: Yes. He then collapsed on their perfectly manicured lawn.
Hub: How laugh-out-loud funny.
Mum: It was eye-popping apparently. Now the naysayers’ tongues are wagging and she wants a divorce.
Hub: That’ll be a game changer.
Mum: A tectonic shift and a sea change I’d say, but it remains to be seen.
Hub: It will never be the same again.
To be continued, page 15, column 3