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The Independent Culture
THE CHINESE Prime Minister made it known he did not wish to see any dissidents on his visit to Britain. And lo! There were none to be seen. What did readers think other important people would rather not see?

Roxanne Mercer reckons Michael Fish would like those "there will be no hurricane" weather forecasts to be erased. Kim Noble revisits Cardboard City and urges that it should be hidden from public view by a multi-dimensional projection of "Oliver!" the musical, as poverty is so much more palatable when set in the past and set to music. Bruce Birchall thinks Claudius shut out Messalina's public affairs, Nero must have wanted to blot out Rome so badly that he burned it down, and that Cato had a similar phobia about Carthage, ending every Senate speech with a call to have it destroyed.

Jane Reeves would like her garden rendered invisible to nosy neighbours, so she can have an Arcadian frolic (nymphs and shepherds, come away!) undisturbed by voyeurs. James A. Kelly thinks George Michael might feel similarly about the visibility of toilets to the LAPD, and Sam Arnold thinks Ron Davies might empathise regarding Clapham Common. Colin O'Hare suggests getting every WI branch to knit a few squares, to make a great blanket to cover up a certain eyesore in Greenwich.

Anna Gawan reckons girls' schools want to hide the existence of boys. Eric Bridgstock wonders why Thomas Hardy made Jude the Obscure. Andrew Duncan thinks the Queen would like images of daughters-in-law to be banished. Clair Hubble thinks the fairy-tale queen who asked her mirror "Mirror, mirror on the wall/ Who is the fairest of them all?" had a whole warehouse full of poisoned apples with which to remove the competition; HRH might do well to do likewise!

Kathryn Pay says Michael Jackson would like his medical records hidden. Michael Rubinstein thinks Jeffrey Archer would like to hide the hearts on his sleeve. Sharon, Alex & Emily feel the tourist industry would prefer to hide roadworks, workmen and scaffolding from sightseers. Tony Howard reminds us of a Barry Hines TV play in which a pit is spruced up, with white lines painted everywhere, for a royal visit, so as to protect the royal eyeballs from the realities of Old King Coal.

Bruce Birchall, Anna Gawan and Kim Noble win a Chambers Dictionary of Quotations. Well, it is almost the new millennium (or is it? There was no year 0. We lost 11 days one September switching from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar, and the Roman year, in force in occupied Judaea, began in March, so Loki says 12 March would be a trifle more accurate) and almost time for the much-heralded millennium bug to appear. What kind of havoc could that bug yet wreak? Suggestions to Loki.Valhalla@bt or Creativity, Features, The Independent, 1 Canada Square, London E14 5DL, by 22 December. Results on 28 December. Next week: the inspiration for Raymond Briggs's comic character Fungus the Bogeyman.