Postman Pete is missing this week. He's an experienced and delightful postie so I reckon he probably always books census week off. Let some young whippersnapper have the hernia eh? By the way does anyone else know if whippers always snap or if they can be folded or creased?
So I just read the census through. I love the way the world of the internet has meant that everyone has to be sent a wad of paper thick enough to cover six members of the household, yet it can be completed online.
We have time to think. Although a challenge for some of the more cluttered households the census must be left until March 27th and then we all get to complete it at the same time. Obviously it is designed to take a view of the nation at a precise moment so it is all about one day and how many visitors you had, how much work you did and how many children you had, on that precise day.
Last time (2001) I recall a lot of discussion about the religious question. Some people discovered that if enough similar answers were sent in then a religion would have to be recognised. Agreed on 'jedi' did they as the silly answer of choice.
The interesting question this time is number 17. Tantalisingly it dangles a mystery in front of the reader. 'This question is intentionally left blank ... Go to question 18,' it says, or asks. Is that an ask? Do you now want to scream 'Why?' Is there anyone out there who fails to feel like a bull at a convention of red material shakers? The box demands to be filled.
We need to agree on an answer to question 17 for it is clearly a test of the state of the nation's corporate sarcasm. We must rise to the occasion. How about:
Who cocked up? Have they been fired?
This answer is left intentionally vague.
The answer is 10. I am a jedi. I know what you want.
In case you care:
One might imagine that the term *(whippersnapper) derives from the understandable temptation among more productive citizens to 'snap a whip' at sullen layabouts, but such ne'er-do-wells were originally known as 'whip snappers' in the 17th century, after their habit of standing around on street corners all day, idly snapping whips to pass the time. The term was been (sic) based on the already-existing phrase, 'snipper-snapper,' also meaning a worthless young man, but in any case, 'whip snapper' became 'whippersnapper' fairly rapidly.
Aren't you glad you dropped by? Share your suggested answers using #censusq17 on Twitter or in the comments box and I'll pass on the good ones.