Ian O'Doherty: Mr or Mrs? Well, neither actually
Published 30/10/2012 | 06:00
How do you like to be undressed?
Sorry, that was a brain fart and a subconscious admission that I am just burdened with a mucky mind.
No, what I meant to say was how do you like to be addressed?
You know what I mean, mister or missus or the appallingly clunky 'mizz'?
Frankly, one of the most depressing moments I had recently came when a young fella referred to me as 'Mr O'Doherty'.
Now, the only times I had ever been called 'Mr' before was by sarcastic school teachers, usually when they were handing me a detention or suspension or something like that.
But when that kid referred to me like that I knew what I have now become -- old.
It's a rather sobering thought to realise that young people now look at me as just another wrinkly old codger, but at least people who live in Brighton won't have to shoulder that terrible burden.
No, the local council has come to their rescue with a fantastically daft new ruling.
Now, as you know, Brighton is home to one of Britain's largest gay populations -- I do love the fact that when the Brighton footballers score, the tannoy plays 'YMCA' with the fans doing the dance -- and the council is mindful of the scene.
So mindful, indeed, that they are now planning to scrap any mention of either 'Mr' or 'Mrs' because they say it offensive to transgender people.
They then further go on to say that: "Trans people aren't necessarily male or female", which should come as a surprise to them.
What are they?
They also point out that sometimes "genderqueer" people feel conflicted about using these phrases.
God, I've heard it all now.
What? I don't believe it
Well, knock me down with a Fruit Pastille.
One of the things I feel most proud of when I consider my Irishness is just how much money we send in foreign aid to Africa.
Sure, there are people born and reared in this country who have been paying taxes all their life and now they're reduced to eating cornflakes for dinner.
Sure, we have elderly people who are freezing because they're afraid of the cost of putting on their central heating.
And yes, I am all too aware that our hospitals are falling apart, our schools are crumbling and the general infrastructure is beginning to collapse at the seams.
But don't you just feel all warm and fuzzy at the fact that despite our current travails we can still afford to send hundreds of millions of euros to every tin pot dictatorship in every African hell hole who comes with a begging bowl in their hand?
However, it's not all sweetness and light.
No sirree Bob.
Because last Thursday it emerged that four million of our quid somehow managed to end up in an unauthorised account belonging to Ugandan Prime Minister Patrick Amama Mbabazi (pictured).
You mean there are African leaders out there who are using this free money for their own personal gain?
Who wudda thunk it?
Although he can always use the Father Ted defence: "Honestly your honour, that money was just resting in my account."
Hurray! The recession is over!
Well, that was a close shave, wasn't it?
In fact, for a while there it looked like we might all be buggered.
But no, it appears that we're going to be all right after all.
And the reason?
Well, lap-dancing chain Spearmint Rhino have announced the delightful news that they are opening nine new clubs because demand for girls getting their boobs out is booming.
This is as a result of City traders in England and elsewhere getting bonuses and expenses again and the first thing they all seem to have done is to go down to the nearest topless bar.
Now, call me a prude. Call me old-fashioned even.
But I think I can honestly say that I have never met anyone who celebrates some good news or a wage increase by saying: "Right, to the strip club. Immediately."
Maybe I just hang out in the wrong circles.
It's bloody discrimination, innit mate?
I always thought that John McCririck's biggest mistake was confusing being a hate figure and being a hateful one.
The man other misogynists call the 'guvnor' (pictured) delights in the crass and boorish and, frankly, gives men a bad name.
Now he claims that he has been sacked as presenter of Channel 4's horse-racing coverage as a result of discrimination and ageism.
Or, on the other hand, it could just be down the fact that he is odious and gross and nobody likes him?
Just a thought.