Katy Guest: Rant & Rave (22/05/11)

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The Independent Online


Congratulations to transport wonks in Swindon, Wiltshire, whose latest anti-speeding wheeze makes their distant colleagues on the "rebalancing rail fares" project look like logistical geniuses.

The new pilot scheme there is the first of its kind in Britain, and will no doubt be the last when they realise that it will never work in a million years. The system will clock drivers' speeds as they approach traffic lights and turn the lights red if just one person is speeding.

The "embarrassment" of "glares" from other drivers will soon teach "habitual speeders" that "they will get to their destination quicker if they stick to the speed limit", said a man from Swindon council (whom I will allow to remain nameless to protect him from his own naivety). Mr Swindon has clearly never travelled anywhere, or he'd have noticed that "habitual speeders" could not give a flying Fred Goodwin about other users of the road.

People who speed are not put off by glares, swearing, tears or adverts about poor, dead children, I have noticed. Nor are people who tailgate, or pull out and block a lane of traffic while trying to turn right on to a main road, or park outside KFC in a no-stopping zone because they are too fat and lazy to walk 10 metres for their fried battery animal and coleslaw.

These people are not like you and me, because they had their shame glands removed when they passed their driving tests. And glaring achieves nothing, except higher blood pressure for all.


New research from the University of the Bleeding Obvious reveals that women prefer tall men, apparently because they are more effective at hitting people. In fact, now that we have evolved from the apes, women think a little more clearly.

In this age of quasi-emancipation, women can earn our own wages, wire our own plugs and fight our own battles, and there are very few things for which we need men. Men are necessary, though, for reaching things off high shelves and having pockets.

Only until we get shorter wardrobes and frocks with pockets will these continue to be important evolutionary advantages.