Pensioners, Penguins and Climate Change

The Journal (Newcastle, England), December 4, 2009 | Go to article overview

Pensioners, Penguins and Climate Change


Byline: BOB CUFFE

WE discussed the conundrum of pensioners last week. Pensioners are all around us. They're everywhere we go. It is true that we've seen more pensioners this year than for many years.

There have been more sightings than ever before. You'll have undoubtedly seen them yourself. This phenomenon is down to two things.

Firstly, climate change. Pensioners thrive in a warm climate. Climate change - and I'm trying to make a very complicated subject comprehensible to the great unwashed - is universally accepted as bad for penguins.

But, in this ying and yang type thing, it's good for pensioners. These contradictory juxtapositions - see how clever it all is - sit at the very heart of today's tutorial. That's what this is.

We're expanding the envelope, we are. Lifting the bonnet. Kicking the tyres. And hurting ourselves in the process. This is all a complex interlinking. A big one.

Essentially, a butterfly having Percy Filth in Australia triggers a chain of events, which leads to you trapping your finger in the door.

It's one reason to squash butterflies. But I'd urge you not to. The bad thing always happens on the other side of the world. It's the butterflies over there we need squashing. I think this is how I ended up supporting Middlesbrough. Someone, or something, in New Zealand was having a marvellous time. The counterbalance required was my turning up for the first time at Ayresome Park.

And, just over three years ago, I reckon an aborigine won the lottery at exactly the moment Gareth Southgate was revealed as Boro's manager. A true gentleman. Just what you want in the world of fiercely competitive sport. Like Alex Ferguson. We wouldn't want him, as I don't think he's a true gentleman. He's too rough.

I reckon he'd win any pensioners fistfight. Should it ever be arranged. It's got ITV all over it. I'd vote for Gareth in Britain's Got Butlers. He's made for butlering.

Anyway, back to the long discussed pensioner penguin axis. What's good for the goose - the pensioner - isn't good for the gander: the penguin. Half of me now wants to wander off into the goosing pensioners room. For a mess about. But the other half, that the editor controls, is bringing me back. We may return - I'll find out when the editor is on holiday - and we'll have a 'goosing pensioners at a neighbourhood watch meeting' fest. …

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