Horsing around

A HORSE RACING tale in the Diary reminds reader Philip Morgan of the time he took a lawyer friend to the Grand National. The legal eagle had never experienced such an event, and wasn’t impressed. “Do you think the horses are aware they’re in a race?” he scoffed. “They’re just trying to get those funny little chaps off their backs.”

Struggling to separate work from pleasure, the lawyer proceeded to bring his knowledge of jurisprudence into play: “The difference between the Grand National and the Olympic 100-metre sprint is much the same as the gap between involuntary manslaughter and murder,” he opined grandly. “Intent is an essential component in how such matters should be judged.”

Kind of worrying

BEING a lover of precise language, Gareth Campbell despises the much-used phrase "kind of".

“It doesn’t mean anything,” he grumbles. “It’s the verbal equivalent of radio interference.”

Our reader concedes that on occasion the phrase may add a certain something to a sentence.

For example, a doctor could say to his patient. “You’re going to be fine… kind of.”

Mind your language

WE continue with our linguistic meditations. Reader Ian Barrett asks: “What do you call a broken can opener?” The answer is: “A can’t opener.”

Anti the macassar

Reader Henry Black's wife wants to get rid of the antimacassar protecting the sofa where her husband’s head rests, her argument being that hubby no longer uses hair oil as he no longer has any hair.

Henry, however, wants to keep the fancy piece of cloth. And not only for its sentimental value.

“It may come in handy if I need to blow my nose,” he reasons.

Pause for thought

Reader Lucy Phipps's son has taken up meditation. “I suppose it’s better than him just sitting there doing nothing,” she sighs.

Tee-hee shirt

OUR readers have been recalling memorable T-shirt slogans. Debbie Henson’s boyfriend once turned up at a party she organised wearing a top, across the front of which was written: “Sorry I’m Late. I Didn’t Want To Come.”

Debbie’s dude said the message wasn’t meant for her, and he only wore the shirt because he had nothing else clean.

“Which just about saved him getting dumped,” says Debbie.

Step too far

FACTORY foremen are often tough but fair. Sometimes they’re just tough. Nick Wright once turned up two hours late for work and explained to his boss that he fell down the stairs at home.

“That doesn’t take two hours,” snapped his boss.

Middle Age missive

A historical lesson from reader Michelle Mackie. “How did medieval knights communicate?” she asks. “They used chainmail.”

Read more: Those were the days