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Sporting excellence linked to quality of bedtime stories

Voldemort spurs them onHaving discovered that sleeping patterns impact on performance levels, researchers at the University of Birmingham have now revealed that top athletes perform best when their passage from wakefulness to sleep includes chapters read from Harry Potter, with all the voices ‘done by a grown up’.

By contrast a monotone rendition of ‘The Gruffalo’ without even stopping to look at the pictures can seriously compromise sporting prowess, the researchers revealed; particularly if nobody checks to see if there are monsters under the bed afterwards.

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Parliament to replace statue of Thatcher with statue of Pickles

In a move that observers have criticised as mimicking the Natural History Museum, Britain’s other repository of archaic irrelevance, the Houses of Parliament have decided to remove the statue of former Conservative Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher from its position in Central Lobby.

UK workers start planning route home in light of US blizzard

Millions of UK employees are already talking up the possibility of leaving work early, as a substantial blizzard is forecast to hit the US north-east coast later today.

Charlie’s Angels sequel to star bearded male cast

liberty, egality, kipper tieA controversial sequel to the popular Charlie’s Angels movie has been announced this week, with a cast comprising entirely of bearded men from the West Midlands. The unexpected twist on the 2000 blockbuster comes just days after director Paul Feig announced an all-female cast for the reboot of the 1984 classic Ghostbusters, much to the dismay of many dedicated fans.

London commuter confesses: “I don’t know why I’m rushing”

Whoosh... Life's gone.After 30 years of hard labour at a top investment bank, city worker, Alan Baxter, has finally admitted that he no longer needs to rush on the London Underground. This painful realisation has come at the cost of 3 divorces and child support payments to 4 daughters who like Prada but refuse to acknowledge his existence.

Facebook apologises after site outage causes surge in conversations

users left 'friendless' for up to 50 minutesFacebook has apologised after it was taken offline by hackers today, prompting an hour of chaos in which people spoke to each other, looked out of the window or simply sat in quiet contemplation.

The social media site was disabled from 6am to 7am by cyber warrior group the Lizard Squad. Shares in cupcakes, cute kittens and mild racism immediately plummeted as a panic-stricken world wondered what the hell to do with itself.

Greece votes to change billing address

'Greece is out right now...'The Greek electorate has been celebrating the adoption of a national policy of ‘the cheque being in the post’ by a larger than expected margin in early elections. Winning 36% of votes counted, the Syriza Party was able to promise an end to austerity and a return to ‘hiding’ when someone knocks at the door, ‘ignoring’ letters with red font and being ‘not known at this address’.

Clearly mixed up with some other country with the same name, Greece explained to the European Central Bank (ECB) that: ‘You have the wrong number. No speekee German. And we are in the process of changing banks anyway’, although the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expressed a degree of scepticism that Greece’s accountant would be on holiday the same day that their dog ate their invoice.

Avian privacy group slams RSPB ‘mass surveillance’

everything they do is known to the authoritiesAvian rights activists are demanding answers from the government today after the Guardian published tweets from an insider at the RSPB, indicating the shocking extent of directed surveillance against birds. Not content with using undercover agents known as ‘twitchers’, the shadowy protection agency may be involving members of the public, including some who are underage, poorly trained and below minimum wage.

Museums now on the look-out for loose appendage

some say an opportunity may have been missed...Following the revelation that the blue and gold braided beard on the mask of the pharaoh Tutankhamun had been hurriedly glued back on after it was damaged, archaeologists and museum conservators around the world are checking for other instances of bodged conservation.

Italian conservator Luigi Boninsegna, based at Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence, has given assurances that Michelangelo’s Statue of David remains intact, despite one or two female visitors remarking on the disappointing size of his manhood.

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