Well I have had a surfeit of Bangkok demos and correspondents’ various versions of it, so in this week’s Flying Sporran’s Weekend Diary I present a tongue in cheek piece by Allan Hall a former colleague on the Daily Mail many moons ago when newspapers hunted in packs. 

Working on these newspapers one develops a healthy cynicsm. Allan, as I did, quit the Street a long time ago to freelance. I chose SE Asia. He chose Germany and the new Eastern Europe. Currently western Europe, in particular the UK, has been in a panic over the arrival of Roma ‘travelling folk’ now that the new European frontiers are going down. The Daily Mail in particular has been getting a little hysterical. Wry sleuth Allan was sent to investigate. This may not be the story he filed.

“I was recently despatched to Romania to stem the hordes of pikeys and robbers set to storm the sceptred isle. To preserve the English way of life: for micro-skirted slappers to ingest industrial quantities of vodka early in the evening, only to recycle it hours later over the head of Mr. Patel, the mini-cab driver; for lardasses in onesies to shoplift at will at Pounland and Aldi; for ASBO families to have 14 children and live high, wide and handsome in Kensington mansions. All the things we have come to cherish about our beloved homeland. 

Allan Hall – grim determination in seeking out the truth

“So, fighting through the crowds one-deep at bus termini and airports, past the Romany hex purveyors lolling about the foyer of the Radisson Blu in Bucharest, eating their chow (Ceascu) mein noodles and muttering dark, medieval incantations conjuring up benefit forms from ancient Zanussi laser-powered backlit cauldrons, I endeavoured to find the evil traders in ‘welfare advice.’ 

“I found the crone – Tomasina Crone as it happens, cousin thrice removed on the distaff side to a former News of the World lawyer – outside in the potholed street, eating a bag of hedgehog scratchings as she boiled her newborn in tamarind and blackberry juice. Crossing the wizened hand with silver she tried to present me with a posie of dried flowers and I said; “No, witch, I want the claim sheets you are selling to rip off my country and plunge it into chaos.” Script courtesy of Northcliffe House.

“She feigned ignorance. I reached out for her Gypucci faux-llarmardillo handbag, certain that the mysteries of the UB40, licensing hours and ‘Best-Roma-begging-pitches-in-London’ guide were sealed within. I ran as she hurled foul curses from Vlad the Impala (surely impaler? ed.) that magicked machete-wielding zombies from side streets to pursue me. I made it to the luxury Borat bus with seconds to spare, huddled safely amid the skilled electricians, reliable plumbers, non-psycho nannies and trained IT specialists maniacally determined to wreck forever the reputation of shoddy British workmanship that we hold so dear. As the bus plunged through the dark Transylvanian hills, the banshee howling of 24 hour Sky satellite-plus movies echoing all around, I glimpsed inside the bag….

Daily Mail spoof

“There were no guides to scrounging. It contained a silver bullet, a bottle of Holy Water from the Drac-Kool-Aid drinks conglomerate and a wooden stake with an instruction leaflet attached reading; ‘How to kill the Werewolf.’ Upon arrival at Victoria Coach Station I deported myself immediately to Scoland Yard whereupon I handed the ancient artefacts to a member of the Operation Weetabix team who immediately passed them on to the CPS.

“And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the reason why you may yet see the London Wolfman taking a seat in the dock alongside eavesdropping unfortunates at the Old Bailey. 

“Whatever Plod may claim, I am the one to bring the scabrous beast to justice.

“I bask in the satisfaction of preserving the British way of life and assisting in the (hopeful) demise of a loathsome creature from the dark side. 

“No need to thank me.”

Despite the Daily Mail’s forecast only about 14 arrived I believe. If you’re gonna get it wrong. Get it wrong big time. Now a British Polish M.P. is declaring the education system is Poland is better than in the UK. This could lead to a new migration. Well it would if we Brits could speak any other languages except franglais.