Absolutely nothing to do with banking but, with all this doom and gloom around, I just thought
this plea for help was so funny that it was worth sharing. It’s apparently a true email exchange between a witty but sarcastic member of the public and the Scottish Lothian & Borders
Subject: Your automated telephone answering service
spent the past twenty minutes waiting for someone at Leith police
station to pick up a telephone I have decided to abandon the idea and
try e-mailing you instead.
Perhaps you would be so kind
as to pass this message on to your colleagues in Leith by means of
smoke signal, carrier pigeon or ouji board. As I’m writing this e-mail
there are eleven failed medical experiments (I think you call them
youths) in West Cromwell Street which is just off Commercial Street in
Six of them seem happy enough to play a game which
involves kicking a football against an iron gate with the force of a
This causes an earth shattering
CLANG! which rings throughout the entire building. This game is now in
it’s third week and as I am unsure how the scoring system works, I have
no idea if it will end any time soon. The remaining five idiots are
happily rummaging through several bags of rubbish and items of
furniture that someone has so thoughtfully dumped beside the wheelie
bins. One of them has found a saw and is setting about a discarded
chair like a beaver on speed. I fear that it’s only a matter of time
before they turn their limited attention to the bottle of calor gas
that is lying on it’s side between the two bins.
could be relied on to only blow their own arms and legs off then I
would happily leave them to it. I would even go so far as to lend them
the matches. Unfortunately they are far more likely to blow up half the
street with them and I’ve just finished decorating the kitchen.
I suggest is this, after replying to this e-mail with worthless
assurances that the matter is being looked into and will be dealt with,
why not leave it until the one night of the year (probably bath night)
when there are no mutants around then drive up the street in a panda
car before doing a three point turn and disappearing again. This will
of course serve no other purpose than to remind us what policemen
actually look like.
I trust that when I take a claw hammer
to the skull of one of these throwbacks you’ll do me the same courtesy
of giving me a four month head start before coming to arrest me.
I remain sir, your obedient servant
Here’s the police response:
Dear Mr. X,
have read your e-mail and understand your frustration at the problems
caused by youth playing in the area and the problems you have
encountered in trying to contact the police. As the Community Beat
Officer for your street I would like to extend an offer of discussing
the matter fully with you.
Should you wish to discuss the matter, please provide contact details (address / telephone number) and when may be suitable.
PC Plod, Community Beat Officer
Mr. X responded:
Dear PC Plod
of all I would like to thank you for the speedy response to my original
e-mail. 16 hours and 38 minutes must be a personal record for Leith
Police station and rest assured that I will forward these details to
Norris McWhirter for inclusion in his next book (the Guiness Book of Records).
I was delighted to hear that our street has it’s own community beat
officer. May I be the first to congratulate you on your covert skills.
In the five or so years I have lived in West Cromwell Street, I have
never seen you.
Do you hide up a tree or have you gone deep
undercover and infiltrated the gang itself? Are you the one with the
acne and the moustache on his forehead or the one with a chin like a
wash hand basin? It’s surely only a matter of time before you are
headhunted by MI5.
Whilst I realise that there may
be far more serious crimes taking place in Leith such as smoking in a
public place or being Muslim without due care and attention, is it too
much to ask for a policeman to explain (using words of no more than two
syllables at a time) to these scourge that they might want to play
their strange football game elsewhere. The pitch behind the Citadel or
the one at DKs are both within spitting distance, as is the bottom of
the Albert Dock.
Should you wish to discuss these matters
further you should feel free to contact me on 01234-567890. If after
25 minutes I have still failed to answer, I’ll buy you a large one in
the Compass Bar.