An Excellent Mystery

It’s rare that my husband comes home with a story from work that can reduce us to hysterical laughter; it’s just not that sort of job any more. When he was a full time priest, the stories were sometimes unbelievably funny or sad. Now he’s a consultant in another capacity, it tends to be much quieter all round.

Part of the job involves devising and then sending out questionaires about a variety of subjects and recently they sent out some to a huge swathe of British farmers. Now they expect that most will never come back despite a prepaid envelope, and a 30% return is exceptional. 10% is about normal.

Well, the reply envelopes have started trickling back in for this project and something untoward about one made the lady from admin suspicious because of a lump and a greasy stain, so she opened it, very bravely considering that these are coming back from farmers who are less than impressed by yet more government originated schemes (this was indirectly from the government but not compulsory or anything like that). I’m not sure what she expected to find (dried cow pat? dead mouse?) but she certainly wasn’t prepared for what was in there.

No questionaire, obviously. Nor any clue to who had taken the time and trouble to put the item in the envelope, seal it up and put it in the post.

It contained a single, crumbled ginger biscuit.

I mean: WHY? What is the message here?

We laughed in the car last night till the tears ran down our faces. A biscuit, but why, oh why?

Are they saying You’re as mad as a biscuit? Are they saying they’re as mad as a biscuit. Or was it a child who did it, or a simple(but how?) accident.

I guess we’ll never know.