The fickle, flighty world of political polls claimed another scalp this week.

Awkwardly for LibDem peer Lord Oakeshott, who commissioned the polls in a bid to show the dearth of party support for beleaguered leader Nick Clegg, the scalp claimed was his own. The peer had secretly published polls on four key LibDem seats, including that of Danny Alexander, and was forced to resign.

What puzzles me is why any weight is given to such polls. How do you think you might feel in a year's time, given that you have no idea what the next 12 months has in store? The "opinions" gleaned from polls amount to no more than a band of momentary notions based on knee-jerk answers, disillusionment, wishful thinking and disinterest.

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Polls outside the political realm are just as meaningless. If statistics can be made to tell any story, then polls can used to pluck a random statement out of the ether and, so long as two people agree with it, broadcast it as the voice of the nation.

My inbox is awash with the results of spurious surveys. Only yesterday, within a matter of hours, I was in receipt of two missives concerning the happiness of Scots over 45. One claimed they were the happiest age group of the entire population, had never been happier, couldn't be more happy if they tried. The other claimed they were the age group least likely to have seen any benefits of the recent economic recovery and were therefore incredibly unhappy with their lot.

Advertisers, however, have always loved a bit of market research. Such is the perceived power of the poll that some brands of pet food based decades-long marketing campaigns on the surveyed opinions of, not even the human owners, but the loquacious animals themselves.

The beauty industry, traditionally home to some of the most audacious claims of customer satisfaction, must now fess up in adverts about the actual number of people questioned, allowing us to draw our own conclusions on the value of the gushings of 13 folk.

In the run-up to this summer's heady cocktail of sport and politics, the sporting politician photo opportunity is likely to become ubiquitous. But beware campaigners, for the jolly action shot is a double-edged sword: for every show of sporting prowess is a snap-shot of ungainly mishap.

For an example of the potential dangers look no further than our great leader, whose image quickly became a viral spoof this week following an innocent kickabout with a ball.

Alex Salmond was in Rutherglen visiting a new football training centre when he couldn't resist taking a penalty shot. Within hours his image had been mocked up alongside the bouncing Riverdance crew, a high-kicking Basil Fawlty and a twerking Miley Cyrus.

The Duchess of Cambridge seems to have a penchant for these types of all-action photo calls. Admittedly, she has better luck, but there have been some dramatic near misses, most recently with a speeding cricket ball lobbed by her overly-competitive hubby.

Surely the most epic sporting fail must, however, go to Diana Ross, whose failure to successfully kick a ball during the climax to the opening ceremony of the 1994 World Cup was an all-time comedy classic.

It's not just old timers who have so-called senior moments, it seems. Scottish singer Amy McDonald (tender age: 26) has admitted to forgetting the lyrics to her own songs, as well as the words to the national anthem while performing it. Er… sorry, I've forgotten what I was planning to say on this one...