LETTER: Cold humour

From Mr Chris Martin

Sir: It is not Roger Mear's short-lived Antarctic adventure, but the tiresomely scornful and condescending tone of Alix Sharkey's onslaught ("Dear Roger Mear"; Open Letter, 19 December) which I find "depressingly familiar - and typically British".

Taking the mickey may well be the national pastime, but how about a ceasefire down at the vindictive end of the comedy spectrum? In my native Australia, humour is altogether more good-natured, and there is also a venerable tradition of respecting anyone prepared to "have a go".

Roger Mear's achievement of 500 solitary, unassisted Antarctic miles in six weeks sounds like a decent effort to me. Well done, mate.

Yours sincerely,

Chris Martin

London, W1

21 December