An Offer Not to be Sniffed At

I feel I’m missing out.

As predicted, all week I’ve been fighting off the lurgy. It had been jabbing me on the hooter, with the occasional left hook to the throat, to counter which I’d been ducking and weaving, and defending my body with linctus, Lemsip, Lockets and Lagavulin. But by Friday morning, standing in a packed compartment on the DLR, I realised that I’d succumbed to a nasty bout of, if not Swine Flu, certainly Man Flu. Yes, I had a rotten cold. Being the trooper I am, I made my way to the office, but after an hour of snotting and sneezing my way around the department, I threw the towel in and made the return journey home.


I slipped into my favourite kitten-soft striped pjs and nice wooly bedsocks (well, cricket batting socks anyway), collapsed onto the sofa and under the duvet, remote control in hand and surrounded myself with jollop and tissues. Semi-content and semi-conscious, I settled down for an afternoon of all the crap my new cable service could throw at me. A quick flick through all 183 channels revealed that there was nothing decent anywhere on telly. No matter, I had all the stuff to watch which I’d recorded over the last couple of weeks. I had no mum around to mop my sweaty brow, but I did have lieutenant Columbo of the LAPD. A whole 4 episodes. 8 hours of recorded heaven. Comfort tv and a comfy pit in which to recuperate/feel sorry for myself. Trouble is, such was the heaviness of my cold, I soon nodded off only to be woken up at every advert break (which, of course, are several notches louder than the actual tv show). It was then I started worrying.

Or, to put it another way, I realised that I’m not been worrying enough!

As more ad breaks came and went it became clear to me that I’ve not been spending enough of my life worrying about cheaper car insurance. Like Twitter, Facebook and going to the gym, regularly comparing car insurance is obviously part of modern life that has passed me by. If the adverts which bombarded me that afternoon are to be believed, the nation is gripped by an ever-present fear that they’re paying too much for cover on their motor.

Confused dot com? I certainly am. You can apparently save yourself not only Pound££££££££££££££££s with but also minutessssssss of wasted insurance-buying hell if you go to (do you know about Admiral Multicar????) and during the seconds you’ve saved there, you can get yourself onto the to sort out your Transit. Yep, there’s a dedicated site for insuring vans too. Stephen Fry and Paul Merton lend their weight to‘s campaign for car and home cover, while cheeky cockney builder from Ground Force, Tommy Walsh touts Direct‘s line in van protection. Sir Steve Redgrave used to dress up as an Admiral before they realised that as an actor, Sir Steve makes a great Olympic rower, and Vic Reeves used to be the voice of Churchill, before an unfortunate incident with a breathalyser. Ohhhh yus.


Who are these people who spend their lives insuring stuff ? I’m clearly doing something wrong. Watch these ads and look at the sad, insurance-less faces of the sad old cows therein, quickly replaced by their look of ecstacy when they save themselves £17.50 cos their daughter’s have suddenly taught them how to work a mouse. Is this really a scene that takes place across the land?

I haven’t owned a motor for four years, since I shunted my old Rover up the arse of a parked car on a sliproad off the M25. But when I did have a car, I’m pretty sure I insured it when I bought it, then once a year I would open and close that letter which told me I should do nothing if I wanted to continue my policy for another year. Do nothing, what a wonderful phrase? That, to me, is worth pound££££££££££££££s of fucking around on a dull, dull website. “Mike, would you like to weave your way around the web, looking for the best deal on a van, or do nothing? ” Er…..?

Perhaps they are right and I am wrong (there’s always a first time)? Perhaps instead of tapping away talking to you I should be logged into Morethan to see if I can shave a fiver off what The Incumbent pays for her jam jar, though she seems about as bovvered as I am. She’s brighter than me, so doubtless she’s with Diamond or Sheila’s Wheels to benefit from the fact that she is indeed a Sheila. Perhaps Tommy Walsh does a discount for fat cockneys, as I don’t own a van.

I wonder who insured Columbo’s old Peugeot ? I bet Mrs C got him a good deal.



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