employers to fire birdspotters
Following the publication yesterday of an article in the Daily Express revealing the depths of three obsessive twitchers' obsession with their hobby, employers around the country are bracing themselves to fire bird-spotting employees in the coming week as a cost-cutting measure.
"It's going to save the economy a fortune!" grinned Tom Logan, chief executive of a large multinational accountancy firm. "Until my PA emailed me the Express article yesterday, I had no idea how tragic some of our staff were. We always assumed when one or two of them said they went bird-spotting, what they really meant was they were having an affair. We turned a blind and tolerant eye to that.
"We'd no idea they were really chasing around the country looking at pretty birdies. They're grown men, for fuck's sake."
He concluded, "I've set our HR department to work to cross reference the dates really rare birds turned up with the days our bird-spotting employees called in sick. I've a feeling we may see a pattern emerging over the past few years. Then, when we've got enough circumstantial evidence to satisfy an employment tribunal, we're going to fire the fucking lot of them.
"It's for their own good. They might be forced to get a life."
Barry Gagwell, an accounts clerk from Crawley said worriedly, "Oh shit. Who'd have thought an article about twitching in a national tabloid could stir up such a hornets' nest? I'm fucked whichever way you look at it - I could lose my job; we'll have to send the kids out to beg on the streets of Sussex; and contrary to what I've always thought, now everyone thinks I'm a complete twat.
"I should have stuck to collecting stationery, I really should. You know where you are with counting the myriad varieties of paperclips."
Andy Warhol says 'don't blame me for this shit
The ghost of Andy Warhol today asked to be excused of all responsibility for the impending BBC4 documentary about the UK's self-styled most manic twitchers.
Speaking via a medium during a seance held in a chi-chi loft apartment in SoHo, Andy Warhol's spirit said "For fuck's sake, don't blame me for the toe-curlingly embarrassing sight of grown men hamming to the camera about their out-of-control obsession with ticking off birdies on a list.
"When I said everyone would have their fifteen minutes of fame, I didn't mean for it to be stretched into an hour of excruciating monologues and bathos-infused dramatic sequences of middle-aged men chasing around the country to add a bird to their lifelists."
Twitchers around the country have been awaiting the screening of the documentary with barely contained excitement.
"I can't wait," said Arthur Balsam, a palpably excited twitcher from Rochdale.
This tension has heightened as the screening date has fallen back month after month, with the latest anticipated date being early November. Rumours are currently rife that this will transmute into late December.
Tom Logan, a TV critic from London said "Given that any program about twitchers is bound to be a turkey, and in the yawning comedy void left by the departure of the Only Fools and Horses Christmas Special from the schedules, I expect that the BBC twitching documentary will be screened at primetime on Boxing Day.
"Though it remains to be seen how the homoerotic metaphor suggested by some of the huge cocks on display will go down with the more old-fashioned and traditional BBC audience demographic."
The ghost of Sigmund Freud this evening sought to allay these fears, saying "There are no cock allusions to be seen here - sometimes a big telescope is just a telescope."
Earth is flat, claims leading twitching magazine
Following the success of their speculative paper on the occurrence and origins of the Land's End yellow House Finch earlier this year, leading UK twitching magazine Birding World is to publish a seminal paper in the coming months stating, amongst other astonishing claims, that the Earth is in fact flat.
Helped by the recent reappearance of the yellow Aviary Finch at Prawle in Devon, the credulous and easily led are now using the Birding World yellow Softbill Finch paper as all the justification they need to twitch Devon this weekend and add yellow Commonly Kept In Captivity Finch to their lists.
Barry Gagwell, a twitcher from Crawley said "I was glad I didn't see the House Finch in Cornwall. But after the Birding World article about it, RBA Mega'ing the species for the 2nd time, the large debate about it on Birdforum... if it's there tomorrow and I can get the day off work I will be sadly going for a bird that I hope never gets accepted."
Dr Tom Logan, a psychologist from Edinburgh said "I think what Barry's trying to say is he desperately wants to tick another species in his quest to have a big list and thereby some credibility as 'one of the big boys'. But he doesn't want anyone to think he's that desperate and cheap, so he denies wanting it to be accepted while actually meaning the very opposite, in a transparent and frankly rather pathetic attempt to appear balanced and sensible. What's clear is he's very grateful indeed for the lead provided by Birding World in their article about yellow Houdini Finches."
The forthcoming paper in Birding World is expected to claim that the Earth is flat, Barnacle Geese grow from actual barnacles, Swallows hibernate in the mud at the bottom of ponds during the winter, and that Wrens are lady Robins.
A clearly confused Barry Gagwell commented, "Well, aren't all those things true? If Birding World says so, they must be."