My friend Cherise was in a cafe on the corner of Kingsland Road last week and next to each of the power sockets was a sign that said something like, "Due to the credit crunch we need to charge £1 per hour to anyone who needs to plug in their phone or laptop." I like the way everything is now "due to the credit crunch." People aren't being stingy, oh no, they're just being sensible. What next? Putting a fistful of coins in the meter before your local greasy spoon will fry you an egg? Paying for the washing up liquid so that you'll get clean plates to eat it on? Bringing your own waitress to serve you the food? All this got me thinking so I sat down and tried to foresee some other things that will soon be happening "due to the credit crunch."
Male grooming is very expensive business, so that is going to have to be curbed. Obviously this is a good thing, but it can lead to very serious medical problems. A guy I know recently had an excruciatingly painful condition called pilonidal sinus disease, which is caused when you get ingrown hair growing in the cleavage between your buttocks. He had to have a big slice of the flesh between his cheeks removed, leaving a gaping hole which seeped puss and had to be dressed every day for two months by a nurse. Even worse, he had to spend the whole time going around in baggy tracksuit bottoms, and soon picked up the nickname "AIDS Bum." Because the more hirsute metrosexuals will no longer be able to afford a crack, sack, and back wax with their beautician every two weeks, masses of them could be struck by this. Soon we could see scores of well-groomed men with fake tan and diamante earrings going around town in tracksuit bottoms and loafers with streams of puss flowing behind them.
Everyone in the world is suddenly going to start stinking. That is, unless people can come up with ingenious ways of deodorizing themselves for free. Like this guy I saw in Boots the other day when I was looking at some aftershave to buy my dad for his birthday, who squirted the testers into a puddle in the palm of his hand and rubbed the liquid all over his neck, face, and bald head. I overheard the lady in the shop shouting that she'd seen him coming in at the same time every day for the last two weeks to do the same thing as he made a scramble for the door with half a bottle of David Beckham Instinct dripping from his hands.
Toilet attendants will soon be totally redundant since people will have zero spare change for such totally unnecessary things. Why would you pay a man to turn on a tap for you and hand you a paper towel anyway? It's almost mugging—a man in the toilet asking you for money. Which you kind of have to give him. These guys are going to have to really start working hard to sell their wares if they're to stand a chance of making it through these turbulent times. I was in a club toilet recently and the male attendant had one of the best catchphrases I've ever heard: "No Armani, no poonani." As I walked out chuckling to myself and rubbing some eau de poonani between my hands, I heard the woman attendant in the ladies' toilet next door shouting, "No spray, no lay." This pair will have no problems making it through this economic depression—that I am sure of.
No one will be able to afford cocaine anymore, but it's not just the drug dealers who will be suffering because of this. You know who will be the biggest losers? Sniffer dogs. Think of all the sniffer dogs at Liverpool Street station who will no longer be needed to pick out office workers in Borat mankinis who are planning a night out in Shoreditch with a wrap of 98 percent talcum powder/two per cent cocaine attached to their shrivelled scrotum with an elastic band. Can you imagine all those poor jobless doggies who'll soon be joining the dole queue?
It's not just bankers who'll have to cut back on their lavish lifestyles. Paedophiles will no longer have the means to fork out for annual monthlong holidays in Thailand, so will instead roam our streets, satisfying their depraved urges. On the plus side, with all the homes being repossessed, the chances of suburban pederasty lairs being discovered will massively increase. By the end of the year the police could have shut down hundreds of Barney-themed dungeons.
Illustrations by Paddy Jones