Creativity

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Our request for uses for the M25 has produced a wealth of ideas, with the emphasis on scientific applications. Peter Gillard suggests closing it to traffic and using it as an enormous linear accelerator. "The present entry and exit junctions would make ideal entry and departure opportunities for various fundamental particles."

Michael Rubinstein wants to use both the clockwise and anti-clockwise lanes as atom-smashing accelerators, "arguably the long-est in the civilised world". He believes the inevitable atomic crash or two would create, at the centre of the M25, the first man-made black hole, providing a radical solution to overcrowding and homelessness in London.

Len Clarke suggests uprooting it, cutting it in half and sending one half into space as the Universe's biggest boomerang. "A nice gift for our descendants when it returns."

Anthony Savory suggests using it to lasso Jeffrey Archer's latest advance to prevent it becoming any larger. (The "it", he adds parenthetically, could apply either to the M25 or the advance.)

"Spiral it up Everest," says Geoffrey Langley, "to ease congestion." He is unspecific about whether this refers to Everest congestion or M25 congestion. Failing that, he suggests increasing capacity by making it all counter-clockwise. Or turn it into the London Orbital Experience.

Mollie Caird says reduce the speed limit to zero, give all the drivers sleeping pills and sell tickets for Europe's biggest art exhibit.

Nicholas James says: "Relocate it, centred at the North Pole. Then, since the outer circle is longer than the inner circle, the clockwise travellers will go farther than the widdershins drivers (or possibly conversely, I haven't checked), thus tending to slow the earth (or possible make it faster), making days longer (or shorter) and adding to (subtracting from) the quality of life."

More ideas: Giant noose to throttle London and provide regional autonomy (Martin Brown). Add a single slip road to the Channel Tunnel and divert our traffic problems to France (RJ Pickles). Put Canary Wharf at its centre, paint numbers around the M25 and use as a giant sundial (Mark Baptist). Hula hoop for Brobdingnagians or nose-ring for giant bull (Saar Trickett & Sali Morris).

Prizes to Michael Rubinstein, Anthony Savory, Mark Baptist.

Next week, we shall report on things to do with an Information Superhighway. Meanwhile, we have a problem. On holiday recently, I needed to buy a 17th wedding anniversary present for my wife. None of the standard reference works provided guidance, so I bought her a pair of goggles, a snorkel and a fridge magnet. Was this correct? Definitive rulings on 17th anniversaries, or updates of the usual - silver, gold, diamond or whatever - should be sent to: Creativity, Independent, 1 Canada Sq, Canary Wharf, London E14 5DL. Larousse Dictionary of World Folklore prizes for the best ideas.

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