EVERY “bend” we make to the rules punches a hole in our fragile defences. Nicola Sturgeon is bang on when she mounts that government podium to tell people to stop trying to find ways to bend lockdown rules.

Too many given an inch took the proverbial mile over the Christmas relaxation.

Turkeys to serve 16 people flew off the shelves while the ones to serve 4 or 6 went cheap on Boxing Day.

Every extra inch taken is a hole in the Covid defences and huge new holes are appearing every day right now as thousands put their own interpretation on rules designed to save lives.

Populations in some other countries have more respect for obeying rules set by government leaders.

Maybe our parliamentarians and advisers have weakened that authority through their own crass breaches but that’s not excuse enough in my book to go rogue.

The new strains of Covid-19 are as easy to catch as the common cold. If we all obeyed the rules we wouldn’t have one of the world’s highest infection rates per head of population... higher even than the US.

A great many Americans, as we see every night on TV, are not very good at compliance either.

In the UK, only emergency workers are allowed into your house. Let’s face it, getting the kitchen done isn’t an emergency just because a cooker is involved…that’s just bending i.

If your boiler is spewing out carbon monoxide you can bring in a gas professional to sort it, same for a flooding indoor water pipe that has deluged your makeshift office and drowned your Zoom machine.

Here’s my recent temptation to bend the rules:

One night this week Laura and I awoke with a sudden and very loud cracking noise. The big steel springs to lift the ottoman base (built in storage) caused such immense stress to the big wooden sides of the bed that they dramatically exploded to splinters sending sharp thick wood edges of ragged wood shooting out from the sides of the bed.

Fortunately, we’ve a spare bed but the mattress resembles a trampoline that’s been used by a performing elephant in a Big Top circus tent!

Thankfully the bed shop is happy to come out and build us a replacement but not until the lockdown regulations for workers in the house are changed.

Even with my imagination I can’t think of a rule bend justification to get round this rule – but I did try, and that’s the problem ... too many of us put effort into trying to find a way round the rules.

My dreams of a lovely silent night ended up more of a cracking sleep… but as they say 'you made your bed, now lie in it', or resort to the saggy trampoline until better times allow for a new replacement.

Ally McLaws is a freelance specialist in powerful writing, business marketing and reputation management. See the full range of services on offer and view all previous back issues of this column at: www.mclawsconsultancy.com