JUST when the coronavirus clampdown is becoming really annoying, along comes a possible solution from the past . . . hibernation.
Scientists in Spain have discovered that early humans might have hidden themselves away and slept to help their bodies cope during bitter winters.
Fossilised remains have revealed that the hominids, who lived almost half a million years ago, experienced interrupted bone growth similar to that seen in hibernating animals.
This might indicate that they spent long periods during harsh weather huddled together in caves, slowing their metabolism to cope with the cold.
So instead of plunging us into increasingly stricter tiers, is hibernation the answer to getting us through this debilitating dystopia of Covid-19? Well, after nine months of misery, it might be worth a try. After all, with the new Christmas lockdown, many people are already virtually confined to their home caves.
So here’s the schedule for Operation Yawning Gap …
1. To encourage people to hibernate, the Government will rewrite its previous moronic slogans to bring us even more moronic ones. Stay Alert, Control the Virus, Save Lives, will become Stay Torpid, Control Your Snoring, Save Your Tonsils. And instead of Hands, Face, Space, we’ll be told Potty, Pyjamas, Prayers.
2. Households will be supplied with long-term food and drink survival packs, and told to turn beds or couches into hibernation nests.
3. On January 1, 2021, Brahms’s Lullaby will be broadcast on Radio 4 and we’ll all fluff up our pillows, pull our blankets over our heads and settle in to snooze until spring.
4. Those medically certified as insomniacs will be given free prescriptions for Horlicks or videos of the Prime Minister’s Covid press conferences to help them nod off.
5. A compensation scheme for victims of nightmares during hibernation will be set up on a sliding scale. Seeing the faces of Michael Gove or Dominic Cummings in your dreams will merit a full payout.
6. Essential workers will be excluded from Yawning Gap, but will be rewarded with huge pay rises from Rishi’s magic money tree.
7. Boris Johnson, Matt Hancock, the Doom and Gloom Brothers Whitty and Vallance and the rest of the Government cock-up crew won’t be allowed to hibernate. They’ll have to stay awake and get on with sorting out the mess.
8. The Brexit talks will be ended with no deal before the hibernation. We’ll tell Barnier, Macron and the fragrant Ursula that we’ll be available in a few months if they want to trade on our terms, but don’t go ringing us before then.
9. Dover Harbour and the entrance to the Channel Tunnel in Calais will be sealed off and huge Do Not Disturb / Ne Pas déranger / Bitte nicht stören signs will be put in place.
10. We’ll set the national alarm clock for three months hence – say, April 1, 2021, when Big Ben will chime continuously and klaxons will be sounded in towns and cities to wake us all up. However, if the virus still hasn’t been beaten, everyone will be entitled to another month’s lie-in.