Tuesday 11 November 1997
"At our local nightclub," Norman Foster assures us, "there is a striptease act with a difference. The girl is dressed in finely spun fog which slowly disappears from her voluptuous body, activated by the heat of the occasion. Unfortunately the fog, so dispersed, tends to obscure the audience's view." His local supermarket also sells buckets of fog for use as duvet-fillers.
Talking of voluptuous bodies, Steve Warner advises: "Smother Sian Cole in fog and let your imagination run wild." Ms Cole herself, oddly enough, has a similar fantasy: "I think it would be a good idea to let me loose in the fog ... clothed of course ... then add 50 naked men and 50 naked women and I'd be the prize for the one who caught me first." Nigel Plevin recommends fog-filled condoms "to enjoy steamy sex every day".
Mr D Arnold sent us an e-mail: "The author of your Creativity feature asks what can be done with the current excess of fog. Might I suggest he takes his clever-clogs column, with it's oh-so-smug correspondents - and disappears into it." Well you might, I suppose, were it not for the fact that we don't really approve of e-mail, and we smugly ignore all suggestions from people who put an apostrophe in the possessive "its".
Gerry Kandler advises saving fog "against the day think-tanks fail because their members have not the foggiest". He recommends storing it in old fogeys. Alison Mace wants to market it in pressurised cans "to be used by celebs in their cars, to mistify the paparazzi." She also points out that aniseed balls soaked in water with a shot of fog make a good substitute for Pernod.
Martin Brown plans a new range of child-friendly, sugar-free, "fun" fog in vibrant colours. David Tedora and Bruce Birchall both point out the aphrodisiac properties of ground foghorn. Mr Birchall also sees it as a good meeting-place for blind dates, excellent material with which to make new clothes for modest emperors, or "kiss it and see if it turns into a handsome Pince".
"Colour it with tartan paint," says RJ Pickles, "and sell to tourists as Scotch mist." Clive Oseman says: "Bottle it and sell it as a hair restorer. It doesn't work, but people can never be sure of that, especially from a distance." Geoffrey Langley can't see his way clear to writing about fog, but his nephew Phileas recommends filling the Millennium Dome with fog to create the Victorian London Experience.
Alan Edwards says: "Apart from its obvious use in preserving the dignity of mountains, fog can also be used in the preservation of certain books." He particularly recommends wrapping Wittgenstein's Tractatus and Heidegger's Sein und Zeit in fog as soon as they are purchased. Peter Pool enlightens us about the mistery (a storage place for fog) of pettifogging, a country sport which seems closely related to the fog-gathering expeditions that Viv Wellburn organises to collect fog as a culinary ingredient for thick soups. Leslie Hughes uses bottled fog to provide an atmosphere at seances. Peter Thomas, in the best of many pea-soup recipes, advises: "If you don't like pea soup, put some fog in a saucepan and you won't have any."
Prizes to Alison Mace, Clive Oseman, and Norman Foster. Next week, staple- removers. Meanwhile, it has occurred to us that the real problem about monetary union is that no one knows what to do with the pound, if we join the EMU. All ideas welcome at: Creativity, The Independent, 1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London E14 5DL. Chambers Dictionary prizes for those we like best.
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