Why there's bugger all I can do about 10.1% inflation, by chancellor Nadhim Zahawi

YOU’D think that as Chancellor of the Exchequer I’d be able to do something about inflation. You are clearly ignorant about politics and do not realise I’m powerless to intervene. Here’s why.

It’s beyond my control

The economy is a mysterious beast with lots of strange moving parts. Even though my job is to look after it, the financial system is a global force that cannot be tamed by mere mortals. That’s why I’ll keep blaming surging inflation on the Ukraine war rather than government inaction, all while taking home your yearly salary as a month’s wage.

I don’t really know what I’m doing

Look, I’ve been falling upwards throughout my career. I only got this job because the previous guy buggered off in order to try and get a promotion. I haven’t got a clue how inflation works, let alone how to bring it down. Maybe if I ignore it it’ll go away? I studied chemical engineering for Christ’s sake, I’m way out of my depth.

I’m on holiday

Even if I knew how to help, I couldn’t. The government is on summer recess at the minute, meaning that it’s physically impossible for me to draft legislation that might help poor people buy food. Once I’ve finished lying in my hammock doing f**k all for another week I might be refreshed enough to think about helping.

My heart’s not in the job

Like any job, the first few days were fun. There was a mad scramble for the coveted position, then I turned on the guy who hired me. Good times. The shine quickly rubbed off though. It mainly involves looking at spreadsheets and gradually realising everything’s f**ked beyond repair. It’s hard to care about something that depressing. You just kind of switch off.

Bashing the poor is a key Tory policy

Many of our supporters quite like punishing feckless people for being poor. And clamping down on ‘handouts’ makes them sexually aroused. So there’s no point in fiddling with the economy if only the little people are suffering. And of course you’re too busy worrying about food and hot water to pay attention to politics and boot us out. Put like that, everything is going rather well.

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Rubbish holiday gifts to bring back for your friends and family

ARE you away on holiday and feeling obliged to bring back gifts for the saddoes back home? Here are some lazy choices that will delight nobody.

Tacky memorabilia

Give something gaudy with the name of the luxury holiday destination where you are ‘making memories’ and the recipient has never been. A Galápagos Islands fridge magnet reminding them how much better your holidays are than theirs is pretty cruel. In fact, any fridge magnet is shit. You could at least go for a keyring or tea towel that has a practical use. Don’t.

The same for everybody

That ‘special’ bottle of balsamic vinegar for Mum will seem like a thoughtful gift until she sees the exact same bottle at your sister’s house and your brother’s house and your granny’s house… and your laziness is exposed. Maybe they’ll get the message and stop buying you things when they go away and the whole ‘generosity’ charade can end.

Lethal local alcohol 

Rough-as-f**k sangria is the classic. But try a bottle of local spirit that may cost them their eyesight. And they can’t even re-gift it because everyone knows they’ve never been to Mexico. Instead, it will take up space on their alcohol shelf until the day they die, periodically tricking them into thinking they’ve got an extra bottle of wine left, only to be disappointed just when they fancied a drink. 

An accessory

Gifting a scarf or a necklace for someone you see regularly is a curse, as they’ll feel obliged to ruin their outfit with it every so often so as not to offend you. And even more of a nightmare when it’s some enormous shell necklace or garish rock bracelet from a beach they never went to that everyone’s going to ask questions about. 

Airport panic-buy

Nothing says ‘I don’t give a shit’ like a present you clearly bought at the airport. A cut-price bottle of vodka, a novelty pack of M&Ms – something that has absolutely no relation to where you’ve been on holiday. It’s so obviously a panic-buy just leave it in the duty free bag and don’t even bother to pretend. On the upside, at least they may enjoy it. 

Something good

Buying something expensive and/or genuinely thoughtful is the worst thing you can do. Because now your friend is going to feel obliged either to ruin their own holiday trying to find something equally lovely to reciprocate, or feel shit about the lousy present they’ve already got you (see all of the above).