Dom Joly: Ice ideas that are bound to snowball

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The Independent Online

With the fall of a momentous inch of snow, the country slowly grinds to a freezing halt. People ring to cancel gym appointments, yoga lessons and the dogs are told that walks are cancelled until further notice (or is that just me?). In professional sport, football matches are postponed and anyone who can, hotfoots it to Miami to join Andrew Murray lounging around a pool and occasionally Twittering this idyllic scene to us frozen proles back home.

With global warming constantly threatening to take these winterised panic moments away for ever, I would suggest that we embrace these last moments of iciness and come up with some new winter games that we can then annoy our perma-tanned grandchildren with by telling them long and dull stories about how great everything was "back when it was cold"...

Xtreme Factor

Following on in the spirit of the internet-led campaign to bait Simon Cowell by making Rage Against The Machine the Christmas No 1, we need to go a step further. Several gangs of snowball-throwing children are required to work in shifts to keep a constant barrage of whiteness thrown at this year's winner Joanna McElderberry. The snowball chuckers could be trained by somebody like Fatima Whitbread and driven about in pursuit of McElderberry by the well-known German driver and cobbler Michael Shoemaker as he prepares for his return to Formula One. This sport could be extended so that, every year, the moment the winner of X Factor is announced, squads of schoolchildren are dispatched. Obviously, this would stop when the snow does but, on this occasion, the committee would be perfectly happy for the children to replace snowballs with rocks, big rocks.

Home deliveries

Again, with the arrival of an inch of snow, all the major stores which have been begging us to order online and enjoy home shopping immediately cancel all Christmas deliveries and bugger up everybody's holidays. This is because their drivers are not qualified enough to drive on anything but Legoland driving school tracks.

The solution is simple and also happens to deal with the unemployed chavs hanging around every city centre looking for cars to steal. Said chavs are all given their own delivery vehicle and told where the deliveries are supposed to go. They can drive like monkeys as far as anybody cares, as at least they are off the streets. For every successful delivery, they receive a can of very strong cider (obviously only given to them once the delivery period is over). This has television potential, so cameras will be installed in the vans to record the highs and lows of their experience. Challenge TV will air a half-hour special every evening showing the "best bits".

Sport aid

For a while, sporting charities involving celebrities will turn their focus away from Africa and concentrate on the last remaining cold communities.

Puzzled Eskimos will receive a visit from Eddie Izzard, who will announce that he is there to help them club as many seals as possible in 24 hours. Izzard, in a fetching fur boa, sets off to the nearest bay, club in hand, before the Eskimos can tell him that they are now Inuit and have a Starbucks round the corner so they're fine, thank you.

Meanwhile, Ian Botham, former cricketer and celebrity mullet wearer, decides to pip Izzard and announces his own money-raising scheme. Botham visits the North Pole in an attempt to beat the old world penguin-hurling record. This attempt is severely hampered by Botham's discovery that there are no penguins at the North Pole – indeed in the northern hemisphere, apart from Birdland in Bourton-on-the-Water.

Not to be discouraged, Botham treks down to the Cotswolds but is unable to reach Birdland because the bus service has been discontinued due to the spate of delivery vehicles being driven by out-of-control chavs slamming into them. Despite the setbacks, Botham and Izzard are both put up for the BBC Sports Personality Of The Year award, but are soundly beaten by the England women's ice fishing team, who bravely made it all the way to the second round at the World Finals held in Isbloodycoldisson in Iceland.


In a shock move, an actual British person learns to ski properly. This extraordinary individual then enters the Vancouver Winter Olympics and wins a gold medal. I know that this sounds ridiculous but I feel that you need an element of fantasy if you want to keep kids' attention. They can get so bored so quickly in this heat.