Independent Pursuits: Creativity

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The Independent Culture
THOSE MESSAGES... You Are Through To (The): Telephone Dating: Afraid all our operators are engaged; Crucifixion Victims Co-Counselling Service: All our counsellors are hung up at the moment; Second Coming: Will be with you shortly (Bruce Birchall). Miss Whiplash: All our Customer Service Providers are tied up right now; Ectoplasm Research: We have been out of the office; Twickers: Please try later (Clair Hubble).

93rd Highlanders' Regiment: Please hold the line; Prison Officers Association: Trying to correct you; Fibonacci Society: Please press 1, 2, 3, 5, 8; Legalise Cannabis Campaign: Try hash (Eric Dunkley). Institute of Telepathy: Don't leave your number and we'll return your call asap (Tony Brandon).

Classical Music Line: Press the appropriate Kochel number; Popular Music Line: For rock press 4:4, for jazz press 6:4, for folk press 6:8, for waltz press 3:4; Esso: Press 4 Star; Medical Helpline: Bladder Problems? Press No.1; Bowels? No.2; The Three Musketeers: Press 1 for all extensions and all for one (Sue Johnson).

Mental Health Institute: Codependent? Ask someone to press 2 for you; Multiple personalities? Press 3,4,5 and 6; Delusional? Press 7 and we will transfer you to the mothership; Low self-esteem? Please hang up as we are far too busy to talk to you (Octavia Leigh). Psychic Association, but you knew that already (TM O'Grady); Psychic Society: Hello Mrs Jones! Irish Taiosach: Please re-Dail; Mountain Rescue Team: Hang on! (P B Thomas).

Magic Circle: Hey! Press two! MENSA: For membership enquiries, press the next button in the series 15, 11, 8, 6 (Tim Stone); Shopoholics Helpline: Dial 1 for a copy of our latest catalogue (Alan Brooker); Shopoholics Helpline: Please wait, you are in a queue; Competition compulsives: Congratulations, you are our first caller; Excercise fanatics: Press up, press down, up, down (Joan Vinnicombe).

NATO: Sorry, we're engaged until further notice; Lady Thatcher: Please key in your PINochet (John O'Byrne); Society for the Insecure: Press any number (NO!! NO!! not that one!) (Derek Holmes); President's Office. To file a sexual harassment suit, press 1.To withdraw a sexual harassment suit, press 2. To be sexually harassed, press 3. You are number 863 in the queue (Susan Tomes).

Eric Dunkley, Sue Johnson and Joan Vinnicombe each win a Chambers Dictionaries of Quotations. A slight change in the rules: challenges will not automatically win prizes. Tony Brandon enquires: would Old Mother Hubbard drive a Lada, a Deep-Sea Diver a Mercedes Benz, Pavarotti a Nissan Dorma? Appropriate forms of transport to Loki.Valhalla@btinternet.com or Creativity, Features, The Independent, 1 Canada Square, London E14 5DL by 15 April. Three more Chambers prizes and results on Get Your Private, Free e-mail at http://www.hotmail.com

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