Inspired by recent events in Westminster, Mrs N Hubbard, a wife and mother from Slough, announced she has taken the necessary difficult decisions following a review of the household budget, and has a plan of austerity measures that will ‘bring our family back from the brink of financial ruin’.
The review, held in front of a fractious family in the Hubbard’s through lounge-diner, focused on all aspects of family spending and, capturing the mood of the times, was accompanied by tea, but no biscuits. Key extracts from the 90-minute address are detailed below:
‘Turning first to Defence. The house alarm system will be switched off, so as to save on batteries and also reduce noise pollution. In this day and age we need to recognise that security is a collaborative effort with our allies and neighbours, and old Mrs Evans from number 73 is so nosey, a burglar could never get passed her. It is also worth remembering that we’re not the household we once were, and no longer have anything worth nicking.’
‘On Education spending. School uniforms are to be purchased in Tesco and Asda, so as to save on costs. Lunches will be made at home and will have to include leftovers from previous meals and own-brand snacks from multi-packs. Savings in the defence budget will be invested in Ju Jitsu lessons for Ian and Eleanor, to provide them with all the support they will need in the playground should they get bullied for having inadequate kit, and crisp packets that make them look poor.’
‘This household is on the brink of an Energy Crisis. We will try uSwitch in an attempt to reduce our energy costs, and turn the washing machine down to 30 degrees for washes. We’re all in this together, and today I am giving my personal commitment that I will not put the heating on without first considering whether I could just put on a jumper. Investment in a wind-turbine for the back garden will be postponed until after dad has fixed the guttering.’
‘Turning to the Home Office, Dad’s vision of turning the spare room into a study for teleworking will be put on hold until 2012, as he needs to show his face around the office in these difficult times. However, the decision will be reviewed should he finally get around to putting all the junk that’s in storage in there on eBay.’
‘As for Northern Ireland/Scotland/Wales, these are all to be considered as prospective holiday destinations in 2011.’
With these measures I have taken the steps necessary to return this household to an even keel, and ensured we have not frittered away today the future wealth of our children, which will be needed to keep us in a nice home. So ends my statement on the domestic spending review. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to the bingo.’