NO PEAS…!! by Harry McAvinchey


Vouchers for smokers? What’s that all about ? They’re  talking about offering  money…er…incentives to pregnant women to help them give up smoking.They want to offer shopping vouchers….They’ll be giving them paid holidays next to give up the booze. ! How did we get to this? I mean , how did we as a sentient species get to this time and place in our social development that a man could stand up with  a straight face and utter this kind of thing .We need funding ,of course, he mumbled  …Something like two million quid! That’s £2,000,000….! Write that down …take a look at all those noughts…My dear weeping stars!!! Did I hear this right . Maybe they’ll get vouchers next for losing weight. Well why not? If we’re going to go off on this tack we might as well give children prizes for going to school every day. Come to think of it ,I rememmber  trying to bribe my youngest daughter to eat up her greens …only to get the sullen two -year old response..”No peas!”…She was pretty adamant back then.No peas passed those lips.

People are staggering about in the half-light of morning , shuffling to the kettle as the wind begins to whip up and the temperature begins to drop. They’re talking about snow today.It’s on its way. You can just imagine ,as the radio rattles away and the shuffler stops abruptly, mid pouring of Punjana to grasp what the guy on the radio has just said. What bloody planet are these people living on ,that they want to infantilise the entire population by bribing them to behave? We all know that if we want to lose some weight, what we have to do is stop stuffing our billowing jaws full of  Kentucky Fried Chicken  and Sweet and Sour chicken balls with special Fried rice and lots of Monosodium glutamate.We already  know we have to stop eating food full of sweet corn syrup washed down with gallons of Coca Cola or we’ll all end up looking  like Americans.

We’ve been hammered over the head for decades now about the iniquity of smoking .How the health of the nation is adversely affected .The hospitals are spilling over with lung-diseased smokers and although they are paying dearly with the associated smoking tax, the product producing all this chaos is still readily available at a corner-shop near you.They fiddle around the edges with this by changing the packaging, but nobody cares .If it’s on sale , they’ll all merrily buy it.The screws are being tightened for the eventual total ban, of course .Who would have thought years ago, while consuming your pint in a fuggy bar , that someday smokers would be cast out onto the pavement ? Everyone knows by now, what they should actually do as opposed to what they really do . It’s all a matter of a certain self-control.It doesn’t stop people driving like lunatics, dropping litter willy-nilly, being slovenly, or killing each other . They’ll continue to do all that anyway.People will find ways to abuse anything and ban anything .They even banned something as relatively innocuous as marijuana and kept  a killing product like  tobacco readily available , so there isn’t much sense involved .

The next thing you know is that they’ll want to ban alcohol ! That really would be a step too far.

Has the world gone mad?

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