Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Insanity sweeps the country... not swine flu!

Tesco Extra... Extra what? Stupidity?

Courtesy of the Daily Snail, I bring you yet another tale of the mass insanity and total collapse in common sense that is currently sweeping through Great Britain faster than a dose of swine flu. The Government denies that we live in a surveillance society or a police state, but I beg to differ...

"When Richard Graham visited a Marks & Spencer store in South Yorkshire to buy some Christmas crackers, his attention was drawn to a notice informing him that, under the Explosives Act, crackers must not be sold to anyone under 16. Mr Graham is 62."

"In Warwick, a group of students, all over 18, went to Tesco to buy a bottle of wine, a birthday cake and a packet of candles. They were asked for ID, which six could produce but one couldn't. So the cashier refused to sell them the wine. OK, they said, we'll just take the cake and the candles. Sorry, said the cashier, but you can't have the candles, either. Why not? No ID.

"Since when has it been illegal to sell candles to anyone who can't prove they are over 18? The students were left with just the cake. They would have been forgiven for pushing it in the cashier's face."

Is it me?


  1. I suppose they think some youngster is going to use birthday candles to bring down the government. I would have thought it's the seasoned cynics over the age of 18 who would be doing that. Include me in that list.

    Perhaps there should be a questionnaire given to each shopper entering a store:

    1. Are you a terrorist
    2. Will you be buying anything which will make your life fun. Please let us know so that we can stop that kind of nonsense.
    3. Are you buying anything to celebrate a birthday, anniversary or traditional holiday? This is forbidden.
    4. If you are buying any kitchen utensils, are you going to be using them to terrorise other shoppers / raid a bank / hold up a security van?
    5. If you appear to be under the age of 90, you will be required to shop only when accompanied by your parents.


  2. Glad to see you're back on your feet, as it were. Hope you don't have too many more bouts of agony to come.

    This is one of my favourite 'mad but true' moments, one that I witnessed for myself:

    A small village in the Midlands. Sort of place where everyone knows everyone and their business. Pretty scary really.

    In the local Asda this young fellow was trying to buy some drink and there was a problem about ID. Seemed on the face of it quite reasonable, given that he did not look 97.

    As, though, I listened to the increasingly heated debate it became clear just what a weird world we've created.

    What was not being contested by either the youth or the cashier was that the previous week he had been in to the same store to buy drink from the same cashier, and had dutifully produced his age-appropriate ID.

    However, this evening he did not have his ID card with him, and because of that was being refused the purchase.

    His perfectly reasonable argument was that he could hardly be growing younger, and if the same cashier had been satisfied last week that he was over 18, how on earth could she doubt his age today?

    "Company policy" was all the cashier would reply, to his evident and reasonable frustration. When it then became obvious that they both knew each other as members of some extended family, the insanity became quite surreal.

    There was no budging the cashier though and the young fellow was left without his alcohol. In a foul mood of course. Prepped to take out his anger on something or someone? One hopes not, but not impossible.

    Company Policy 1 : The Real World 0.

  3. @ Peter Palladas: But how would the company ever have been able to know that the cashier was not shown the ID by her cousin; or how would they have known that she'd have to ask him for it in the first place? I can't understand this.
    @ XTM: I decorate candles with pupils under 10 years old at school, fancy that! They take them home proud and unsupervised ..
    Greetings from Styria! Barbara

  4. So happy you are okay now X-Man, been offline with this dreadful weather, oh look, the Ark just passed our window, river has burst, roads flooded, thank goodness we live high up on a hill.

    So finally get on the computer to see you back again, yeah!!.

  5. Good heavens, Barbara! The children of Austria are in mortal danger. It's only a matter of time before one of those abused children bursts into flames!

  6. Good morning everyone,
    glad to see you're back on better form, XTM..
    There was a story in the papers a couple of weeks ago about M&S requiring proof of age for a birthday card with a picture of a bottle of wine on it - it wasn't just the cashier being a jobsworth, apparently the till was programmed to prompt her to check.
    The thought police are with us.....

  7. TM I recently bought or should i say attempted to buy ... a kitchen knife from Asda and the alarm came up on the till asking for ID.. any other time i'd be delighted to be asked for ID but as i didnt have any with me i couldnt buy it. So home without the knife i went along with my greying hair at the age of 42!!!!

    Emma, Northern Ireland

  8. No it's not you. The country has gone barmy

  9. I think I've posted this before, so I won't bore people with the whole story again, but a friend of mine (aged in his 30s) was refused alcohol in Tesco because he had no ID, and then, even when other people had established his age, they still wouldn't sell it, on the grounds that once refused - you can't buy it. It's mad!

  10. LOL - I too was wondering how Barbara had managed to get the children to stick in the wax!

    This is of course the logical end result of a creeping compliance culture, where people are forced to tick boxes rather than making informed decisions according to the individual situation and taking responsibility for the result; our collective common-sense withers through lack of use.

  11. My ambition to hijack a plane with sharp tweezers has been thwarted and now these poor students cannot riot with birthday cake candles...

    These stories are funny, crazy but also very depressing.

  12. I know how quickly muscles wither and turn to useless mush. The brains of Britain must be heading that way too.

  13. Ah, the Daily Heil readers’ dichotomy.

    There are no ‘thought police’, there is no ‘PC brigade’ – just nearly 70 million people trying to muddle through life as best they can. Compared to the innumerable daily supermarket transactions, these statistically insignificant lapses of (un)common sense are local humorous stories needlessly sensationalised at a national level by these deceitful, tawdry and unimaginative tabloids.

    The UK/Great Britain [delete according to your jingoistic preference] is still the best country in the entire world in which to live. By reading the hate and lies that the Daily Mail and its ilk perpetuates, you betray us all. If Britain’s so ‘broken’, then why do all the immigrants and asylum seekers that terrify the Mail so much risk their lives to come here? Since Britain is so awful, why don’t all those that read the Mail just leave, and leave the rest of us to it?

  14. Oh the languages! I don't of course stick the children into the candle wax, nor do they stick themselves onto it; instead I show them the wafer thin wax pieces in various colours; I have them bring in candles; then we discuss the kind of decoration they'd like to make for the given occasion; and then they do it. It has not ever crossed my mind that children this age would not already know about the appropriate use of candles, they learn that at home and in kindergarten. - I have experienced children however who are not able anymore to bind a shoelace. So I try to teach them that as well if the need arises. I guess it's due to the lack of shoelaces most of the time in their everyday environment that they don't anymore learn it. Also they cannot strike matches. But I teach that to them only under supervision and I do not give them matches of course to roam about with.
    Please do not tell me Britain has banned shoelaces or knotting for children (God forbid, they might knot a noose?)

  15. I think that's a very simplistic view, Oscar. I guess, being a dog, you haven't travelled much. The Daily Mail has many faults (although it sells an enormous number of copies each day) but it's the Left's favourite bêt noire. However, these stories appear in other media channels frequently too. And if they are true, I don't care how insignificant they are statistically, it's still a chilling demonstration of the breakup of civil society and a slide into a sort of impersonal world that I don't wish to see.

    As far as asylum seekers go, there's a really good reason why they're lined up at Calais trying to get in. I'll give you a little multiple choice test and you see if you can pick the right answer.

    Asylum seekers want to come to the United Kingdom because...

    a) The fabulous weather
    b) Superb cuisine
    c) Cheap housing and no overcrowding
    d) Empty roads and enjoyable motoring
    e) Low crime rates
    f) Ridiculously generous benefits and welfare

    How did you do, Oscar? Even a dog ought to be able to get that one right!

  16. You know it always makes me laugh when I read or hear of some of the things that are forced apon us by our European masters...but its even funnier when some of the "Euro-Laws" are being implimented by shop staff... like the refusal to sell an old woman of 78 a bottle of milk... because the bottle is made out of glass... its unfit for sale due to the possibility of (accidental)breakage.... or the refusal to sell box of matches to man because they may ignite in his pocket...(under health and safety laws)....its a good job most of us ignore European laws.... or the country would go bust for certain... sorry sir... cant sell you petrol to go in your car... it might explode while your filling your tank..... yea....

  17. The problem is we live in the only country stupid enough to take these diktats seriously and enforce them rigorously. It is also a sad endictment on this country's education system where common sense seems to have been wiped from the curriculum.

  18. I (24) and my friend (23) were in a supermarket recently shopping and were asked for ID to buy a bottle of wine. I was paying and produced ID. My friend didn't have any with her and so we were refused the sale. I asked the cashier if I took the wine to a different till without my friend standing next to me, would I be allowed to buy it. The cashier said this would be fine.

    How does this make sense?!

  19. Good afternoon ETM

    After reading all this, I will be going out with my girlfriends later (age group 45 - 55) where we will:

    1. drink more than our weeks allocation of "units"
    2. probably diss/and/or praise the male population
    3. not fall down stoopid or cry
    4. ignore all ill thought out advice from popular tabloids (polite term)
    5. spend more money than we should and probably flirt with a young waiter or so
    6. go home and fall straight into pit without removal of eye makeup

    Ho hum and hope all is well with you, Whisky and Mrs ETM today. Husband in charge of Chelsea Gang this evening - he has been given instructions (probably ignored them as well).

    Cheers, Cats' Mother

  20. Yup, I always tell my kids that common sense and good manners will take them a long way. Luckily they have plenty of the first attribute and enough of the second so they will be OK in life. Oh and my cats are the same... they know where their tin-opener is.
    Glad to see you on form XTM

  21. I probably did a bit too much today but I'm now settled on the sofa enjoying the very first fire of our new wood-burning stove. I sense that a certain ginger cat might sprawl himself out in front of it and we shall both doze off during Midsomer Murders.

  22. Don't we all? (doze off during Midsomer Murders)? And this is despite the attraction of trying to recognise where it was filmed in our area. Happy doze XTM.

  23. glad to see your feeling a bit better .

    as for the article , i have been seeing alot more of these things happening , right down to the elderly person who was denied the purchase of a lemon and another the denial of purchase of cat food cause she couldnt prove she had a cat . i think the uk is losing its collective marbles . things arent to much better in the usa tho , i am 43 and was denied liquor sale becasue i didnt have my id with me even tho my hair is greying he didnt believe i was over 21 , but the very same liquor store was just closed down for sales to minors under 18.
    go figure .

    rhonda usa

  24. The world is insane. Period!

    Enjoy the sofa XTM. Hope the cat enjoys the fire and avoids any spitting wood! In our previous house we had a stove and our neighbour's siamese loved it! So did our dog but only if the cat allowed her to! LOL!

    Keep trawling the media for more proof that common sense is, on the whole, no longer required where dealing with the public is concerned.

  25. Ooooo a real fire. Luvverly. Yes, sharing the fire with a cat does mean that it (the cat) gets the lion's share of the heat and anyone else makes do with any stray wisps of heat while stuck somewhere in the background. No doubt Whisky has made that clear already .. ;-) (They're very good at demanding their rights but not so fast at allowing access to shared facilities .. )


  26. Luckily they have plenty of the first attribute and enough of the second so they will be OK in life. I too was wondering how Barbara had managed to get the children to stick in the wax!