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TGI Thursday

I was going to write on this topic last week.

But I took the day off instead. It's the news that Gambian president Yahya Jammeh has given the country's public sector workers every Friday off.

They will still do a 40-hour week, 8am to 6pm Monday to Thursday, or 10/4 as we say these days. Mr Jammeh said: "This new arrangement will allow Gambians to devote more time to prayers, social activities and agriculture – going back to the land and grow what we eat and eat what we grow."

Mr Jammeh is an ideas man. He said he could cure Aids in three days with a secret potion of herbs. He had another plan to fast-track everyone on Gambia's death row before firing squads but desisted when international opinion asked him to haud oan a minute.

The three-day weekend is one of Mr Jammeh's better ideas. Can the concept of every Friday off translate from a sleepy African country famous for beaches and hedonism to a hectic, target-driven Scottish place of work such as, for instance, Glasgow City Council?

The answer is probably yes. The workforce will warmly embrace the concept of Thank God It's Thursday. Not only public sector staff but workers everywhere will beaver away like the very devil to get the week's business done by Thursday tea-time. Leaving Friday free for prayers, socialising and tending to the land. More space will have to be allocated for allotments.

Will the nation thrive on a four-day week? Probably. I remember the three-day week imposed in the mid-1970s and everything went tickety-boo. It was that nice Ted Heath who gave us the three-day week. It all changed when Margaret Thatcher took over and brought in the no-day week.

There will be efficiency measures with the four-day week. Such as people just getting on with the work and not wasting time at meetings. If there has to be a meeting it's got to be on a Monday. This means people whose job it is only to go to meetings can have Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday off as well.

You are probably wondering what will happen to dress-down Friday in the office. It will be replaced by dress-up Thursday. Male employees may turn up in twin-set and pearls or just choose something from the dressing-up box.

Next: I Don't Like Mondays.

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