A school headmaster at Cummersdale in Cumbria, Mr Shaun Halfpenny, has thwarted the efforts of the Health and Safety police by issuing safety goggles to his pupils, thus clearing the way for the introduction of Conkers into the school curriculum. Having yawned through the Olympic Games Finals of the Mountain Bike and BMX, I think it’s time to consider the inclusion, not only of Conkers, but other long-neglected playground sports into the Olympics programme for London 2012. With our trees groaning with horse-chestnuts after the wet summer, it’s not too early to start training.
The said headmaster’s name suggests that the time may also be propitious to campaign for the acceptance of Shove-ten-p (formerly Shove-ha’penny) into the Olympic schedule.
As host nation, the opportunity is, well, golden. We should be campaigning now for the acceptance of other quintessentially British sports, (though I’m not sure about cricket). Tiddleywinks, for example: if jobless teenagers were busy tiddling their winks on street corners there would be less knife crime.
The only problem is that if the IOC were to allow the above classifications, the fiendish frogs would lobby for inclusion of their much more lethal sports, such as Boules, or its Provençal variant, Boules Carrées, (square boules), designed for mountainous regions to avoid the boules from rolling down-hill. (It's true - the Boules Carrées World Championships are being held in Cagnes-sur-Mer this weekend.)