Obsessive Compulsive Expenses
I thought I’d heard it all when it came to the MPs’ expenses scandal. Up until today my favourite story had been the one about the MP who claimed for a duck house (and not as his second home). But this morning I came across this gem in the paper.
‘Labour MP Sir Gerald Kaufman has justified claiming for a pair of Waterford Crystal grapefruit bowls costing £220, saying that it was due to his “self-diagnosed obsessive compulsive disorder”.’
Apparently poor Gerald has to have exactly the same breakfast, from exactly the same dishes, whether he is at his home in London or his home in Manchester. His breakfast consists of the following:
- Half a grapefruit (from afore-mentioned Waterford Crystal dish)
- A bowl of muesli with semi-skimmed milk
- A cup of coffee
- A Rich Tea biscuit
He added: “You may think I oughtn’t to have a Waterford Crystal grapfruit dish. But I do. Because I’ve got this self diagnosed OCD, I do things according to rules I’ve created.”
This is genius on two levels. Not only is his OCD “self-diagnosed” but the rules he has created conveniently dictate that he should dine from Waterford crystal as opposed to Tupperware plastic or Argos china.
I am currently completing my tax return.
I am also feeling the onset of a “self diagnosed” disorder which will unfortunately render me unable to work in a two bedroom terraced house in North West London.
I feel compelled to work in a beachside villa in Barbados (complete with moat, duck-house and Waterford Crystal toilet seats). As this is due to a serious (self-diagnosed) medical condition I have no choice but to claim it all as expenses. If the Inland Revenue query my claim I’ll simply send them over to Gerald’s for a grapefruit breakfast and I’m sure he’ll back me up.
On a more serious note, did anyone spot the real crime lurking in Gerald’s breakfast? I am talking of course, about the Rich Tea biscuit. In the entire history of biscuits there has never been a more insipid creation than the Rich Tea. It has no flavour, it disintegrates the moment you dunk it in your tea and if you don’t dunk it it’s like eating dry sand in biscuit form. The fact that poor Gerald forces himself to eat one of the wretched things every single morning indicates to me that his self diagnosed disorder is not just obsessive and compulsive but downright sado-massochistic.