The literary classics you've only read because they made you at school

YOUR first encounter with great literature is always to be treasured, unless you were forced to read it by a twat teacher for an English Lit GCSE you failed. Like these: 

Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

A pair of tramps with memory problems hang out waiting for someone called Godot. He never shows up, and that’s bollocks to start with. The closest thing to an event is when two other people arrive, one an aggressive drunk and the other an idiot. Teenagers go through this every time they wait at a bus stop.

The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

Fishing and old men are two of the dullest subjects possible, and Hemingway went and wrote a mash-up. The plot’s about a crap fisherman finally catching a fish. But it’s too big to put in his little boat, so he ties it alongside and sharks eat it all. The sentences are short. The book is short. But f**k it feels long.

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

Another story about old men and fishing, but at least this one’s about an old man hunting a sperm whale called Dick so there’s solid innuendo value. He probably catches the whale, or maybe not? Nobody’s ever finished it, not even the teacher.

Anything by Shakespeare

The plays are unreadable: that’s fact. If you’re lucky, you’re doing Romeo and Juliet so you get to watch the DiCaprio version. If you’re unlucky, you’re doing Twelfth Night and watching a low-budget 1980 BBC version with Felicity Kendal. For a 14-year-old this will be so horrifying alien an experience they will never go near Shakespeare again.

The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy

Getting assigned a Thomas Hardy book is the death of all hope. Even the pictures on the covers are achingly dull. This one’s about a bloke who sells his wife and becomes mayor. 18 years later she tracks him down, but this isn’t a cool revenge thriller like the Taken trilogy, they just hook up again.

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Now this is more like it. Home Alone on a larger scale, this is the story of a load of kids lucky enough to get shipwrecked alone on an island who kick loose and have a massive party. Sure a few die, but you can’t make an omelette without breaking a few eggs. Buzzkill of an ending where adults arrive just as it’s getting really good.

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'It's so much more efficient working from the office' says man in eighth conversation about it this morning

A MAN has agreed with the eighth colleague he has held a lengthy conversation about office working with that it is so much more efficient. 

Jordan Gardner has so far discussed how effective and collaborative office working is with his line manager, his department head, the managing director’s PA, colleagues on both sides and two people queuing for a toastie in the canteen.

He said: “As Yasmin was saying to me before while she waited for her photocopying to finish, there really is no comparison.

“If I was working from home, by now I wouldn’t have had a single chat with anyone. I’d have been on the sofa working from 8am without even the benefit of a commute.

“Instead I know what everyone’s up to, where they’ve been on holiday this summer, what they thought of Kaz and Tyler making it official on Love Island, that Danielle’s having to express her cat’s anal glands manually, and of course the superiority of office working.

“I don’t know how the company’s been able to keep going with us all at home, unable to share vital insights while going around asking if anyone wants a Starbucks because they’re popping out. Thank God that’s over.”

Gardner then returned his attention to the short reply email he has been writing ever since first arriving in the office two hours ago.