For reasons far too dull and lengthy to go into (key-related), I was stuck in my car with my Dad and two sleeping children for a time last weekend. All that lay between us and interminable boredom was a copy of my Dad's Mail on Sunday, winking away at me.
I'll set out my stall from the start and risk offence to any Daily Mail lovers out there. This is not a newspaper for which I possess any warm and cosy feeling. In my view it is agenda pursuing journalism at it's worst, full of erroneous, misleading writing designed to whip up ill feeling and encourage fear and prejudice amongst its readership. Indeed there is a rather interesting website devoted to pointing out the errors spewed by the Daily Mail journalists, and I would at this point pass the subject over to the incomparable Stephen Fry to articulate far more effectively than I as to why this is a worthless rag and a waste of the world's resources.
So, you can see my dilemma.
However having quickly tired of watching grey Cumbrian drizzle rolling down the steamed up windows of a filthy Renault Scenic, I swallowed my pride and started leafing through the least offensive part of the paper - the magazine. All hostility was soon forgotten when I came across an advert for the 'Siamese Slanket'.
A blanket...with sleeves....for two people.
Is it wrong that a part of me - a primitive part, my lizard brain or inner Homer Simpson, actually found this to be an idea of genius for a fleeting minute? Practicality quickly came to the fore - what would happen if one of us wanted to get up from the sofa to make the evening cup of tea? There would be bitter argument over who kept the slanket, and who would lose the benefit of slanket heat. Logic would dictate that the slanket stayed with the sofa, but then what of the party getting off the sofa to make drinks for mutual benefit?
I think it is fear of the resulting squabbling which will stop me from purchasing one of these items, rather than the realisation that owning one is tantamount to admitting our life has become reduced to a sedentary couch potato high cholesterol spectator sport. However the siamese slanket advert should always have credit for being the one time when reading the Daily Mail genuinely made me laugh.