LOUGHRAN: I don’t need a licence, I’ve got a gun: Best excuses for cheating on your TV

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By GERRY LOUGHRAN
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If you have a TV set in this country, you need a licence, which costs £147 (Sh19,700) per year, unless you are over 80, when you can watch for free (Heh heh)!

Watching without a licence can result in a fine of £1,000 (Sh134,000), which is why 94 per cent of homes obey the law.

But what of the six per cent?

According to the authority involved, TV Licensing, most defaulters just hope they will never be caught, but when they are, they come up with the most inventive excuses.

DIVORCE
Here is a selection:

I am exempt from buying a licence because I am Prince Harry’s girlfriend.

I don’t need a licence because when we got divorced, a court gave her half of everything, so I got the TV and she got the licence.

I have a smart TV and it’s so smart, it can work without a licence.

PREMIER LEAGUE
The TV is only for the dog, it stops him howling when I am out.

I don’t need a licence, I have a shotgun. Some excuses need explanation:

I am not playing for my licence now that the BBC are showing porn, Gary Lineker in the nude on Match of the Day! (Ex-football international Lineker promised to present Match of the Day in his underpants if his old team, Leicester, won the Premiership, which amazingly it did.

He appeared for part of the show in underpants.)

I only watch Premier League football and, as I am a Newcastle United fan, I no longer need a licence. (Newcastle United was demoted from the Premier League for one season).

My tag interferes with the TV signal. (People under curfew are obliged to wear an electronic tag).

A spokesman said TV Licensing would be happy to accept payment in weekly or monthly instalments.

***
Thirty people have been stabbed to death in London so far this year and everybody agrees that is epidemic level.

But nobody agrees on how best to tackle it.

The new head of the Metropolitan police, Cressida Dick, made it clear she supports “stop and search”, where individuals can be accosted by a police officer at any time.

Mrs Dick said the practice was “hugely powerful” in tackling knife crime.

RACE RELATIONS
Moments after she had expressed her views in a meeting with concerned parents in Putney, South London, a man of 20 was stabbed to death in front of his girlfriend in Romford, east London.

Race relations experts warned that any increase in “stop and search” would alienate non-white communities.

Figures published in 2015 showed that black people were up to 175 times more likely than white people to be stopped and frisked by police in certain areas of the country.

Omar Khan, director of the Runnymede Trust, a racial equality think tank, said: “We’ve met young men who have been stopped 15 times but never had a conviction.”

A Metropolitan police spokesman said stop and search was an invaluable tool for tackling knife crime and resulted in more than 3,000 arrests for weapons possession each year.

The outcome of the dispute may depend on the Prime Minister, Mrs Teresa May.

As Home Secretary, according to insiders, she thought stop and search was a waste of time.

***
I don’t know if they have them in other countries, but car boot-sales are popular in Britain, especially with a lady from Isleworth, London.

On an agreed day, often a Sunday morning, car owners will park in a field or other convenient spot, let down their boot lids and display all sorts of second-hand stuff they want to get rid of.

The prices are very low and there is always the chance of a bargain.

DIAMOND RING
Thirty years ago, the lady from Isleworth went to a car boot-sale and paid £10 (Sh133) for a ring, which looked like a nice piece of costume jewellery.

For decades, she wore it day-to-day, out shopping, everywhere, until someone persuaded her to have it assessed.

The ring turned out to be a 26-carat white diamond from the 19th century.

It will go on auction in July and is expected to fetch £350,000 (Sh47,000,000).     
***
Reaching the end of a job interview, the Human Resources officer asks a young engineer fresh out of a top technology institute:

“And what starting salary are you looking for?” The engineer replies: “In the region of £80,000 (Sh10,700,000) depending on the benefits package.”

The HR man inquires: “Well, what would you say to a package of five weeks’ vacation, 14 paid holidays, full medical and dental, matching retirement fund to 50 per cent of salary, and a company car, leased every two years, say, a red Corvette?”

The engineer sits up straight and says: “Wow! Are you kidding?” The interviewer replies: “Yes, but you started it.”

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