It's a jungle out there: MPs brawling and spiders crawling
What could be scarier than a huge, hairy venomous South American spider lurking in your bananas? Could it be a Scotsman letting rip with “the heid” in the bar of the House of Commons?
Last night police were called to Strangers Bar, which is reserved for MPs and their guests, at almost 11pm, after an alleged assault. They are investigating reports that Conservative MP for Pudsey (the Yorkshire constituency, not the charitable bear) Stuart Andrew was head-butted and punched. While the inquiry is continuing, Labour has suspended its Falkirk MP Eric Joyce, who was detained by officers.
You can’t help but imagine that a Commons bar-brawl would be like something out of The Beano: Dennis the Menace and the Bash Street Kids lined up on one side with scuffed knees, skew-whiff caps and unravelling socks, while Cuthbert Cringeworthy teams up with Walter the Softy on the other.
That, presumably, would make John Bercow the Headmaster (real name Headward Headington-Hail – surely a Tory?), confiscating their catapults and sending them with heads hung in shame to detention.
In recent years, the Beano has been criticised, not least by its young readers, for being too politically correct. Not much chance of that in the Commons. But on the other hand, there’s not much chance of Dennis launching a head-butt at anyone, either. Good thing, too. What sort of example would that set?
When it comes to causing a rumpus, however, the ASDA branch in Chesser, Edinburgh, beats Westminster hands-down this week. Staff unpacking boxes of merry yellow bunches of bananas pulled out a shipment from Colombia, and found Shelob from Lord of the Rings clutching a piece of the wonky fruit.
Male shelf-stackers ran screaming (it’s all gone a bit Beano again…), until shop worker Petra Merriman, 45, calmly caught it in a plastic jar. The imaginatively-named banana spider, which had a 10cm leg-span, was taken to Edinburgh Butterfly and Insect World, where it later died. Aww.
But here’s a chilling thought: it was a female spider. Do they die after giving birth? Chew that over while you munch on your lunchtime banana, fellow arachnophobes…