Tuesday, 31 December 2013


So how did last year’s predictions go?  Well, it now looks as though the economy might actually be doing better than I predicted.  But this has yet to translate into benefit for 57% of the ordinary people who constitute the middle 34% of those engaged in economic activity or those not in economic activity but making a net contribution to the economy in ways determined to fall within the bottom 11% of economic indicators.  So maybe I was overly sceptical about government statements last year.  But with 6% of commentators undecided, and nearly half disagreeing about the definition of ‘doing better’, we must still wait and see.

So the International Year of Statistics comes to an end.  And it seems that over 60% of the population were unaware of this fact, 45% of those were wholly unconcerned by the revelation and some 7% of those were not even interested enough to wonder what next year is the International Year of.  That still leaves 98.11% 80% 22% quite a lot of people who might read this blog.  For you, 2014 will be the International Year of Family Farming.  So let’s get out there now and start cultivating those new families!

Here are my predictions for 2014:

  • ·         80% of boys born in the UK this year named George. 
  • ·         Girls not named Kate are mostly named Georgina or Georgia.  None of them are named after fruit or places in America.  Oh, except possibly Georgia.
  • ·         After a buoyant end to the year and a public mood of apparent equanimity, Prime Minister discusses with The Queen the possibility of a second child for Kate and William.  
  • ·         The south of England is free from snow at the start of the year for the first time for 54 years and quickly moves into a heat wave.  Hose pipe ban and guidance on community water sharing issued, even in those areas still flooded. 
  • ·         IPCC meeting in Hawaii determines that meteorological deviations in UK not necessarily the result of climate change.
  • ·         Millions of tons of snow imported from Egypt to Sochi for Winter Olympics.
  • ·         New dance, ‘frisking’, involving gradually taking off each other’s clothes, sweeps celebrity night clubs.  Daily Mail devotes 5 page spread to photographs of every celebrity it can think of in simulated poses of frisk.
  • ·         Miley Cyrus releases frisking video to protest her exclusion from media gallery of frisking celebrities.
  • ·         Students in Sussex University refuse to attend lectures by female lecturers unless they dress as men.
  • ·         Google launches new 4in tablet with 1TB memory and 2 x 12Mb cameras. 
  • ·         Amazon gives away 1 million 3D printers for trial of digital delivery systems.
  • ·         Restaurant in Truro becomes big hit, serving ‘redeconstructed’ meals with ingredients side by side on plate instead of heaped into tower.
  • ·         China buys Greece.
  • ·         By the middle of the year most of Australia gripped by worst snow and freezing weather conditions on record. 
  • ·         IPCC scientists in Seychelles judge that Australian weather patterns are result of normal long term fluctuation and do not represent example of climate change.
  • ·         England fail to progress to second round of World Cup after avoiding playing their opening match in Manaus but losing in penalties to Costa Rica during a freak hail storm.
  • ·         Poll finds that 9% of British public still remember Nick Clegg.
  • ·         European Court of Human Rights rules single sex schools in UK illegal.
  • ·         New drama in Norwegian about daily life of Androder Aarberg, an Oppland farmer, grappling with adoption of EU farm subsidies, becomes a surprise hit on UK television.
  • ·         43 islands of the Philippines deleted from atlases as only visible during exceptional spring tides. 
  • ·         IPCC issues statement from Nice ruling that rising ocean levels probably unconnected with climate change.
  • ·         Guardian newspaper publishes documents leaked by Edward Snowden revealing that MI6 and the CIA constantly spied on each other.
  • ·         Video message from President Putin, condemning MI6 and CIA denials, accidentally issued before the 2 statements were released.
  • ·         Population of UK predicted to rise to 100m by 2080.  Little public reaction.
  • ·         First language of majority of British residents found to be an Eastern European language.
  • ·         UKIP manifesto details severe curbs on immigration and a scheme of repatriation.  Secures support of Pakistani communities.
  • ·         5 million residents evacuated from South Western States of America as temperatures reach 60 degrees for the third day running. 
  • ·         IPCC meeting in Tahiti evaluate high temperatures in US as part of normal seasonal cycle and definitely not climate change.
  • ·         Strictly Come Dancing refuses to include Nick Clegg in its line-up of celebrities.
  • ·         European Court of Human Rights rules single sex toilets in UK illegal.
  • ·         Prince Harry announces engagement.  Fall in public morale fuelled by depression among girls with double-barrelled surnames. 
  • ·         PM in renewed discussions with The Queen to ask Kate and William to hurry up.
  • ·         China buys Italy.
  • ·         Sugar Puffs, Marmite and Jammy Dodger diet hailed by scientists as key to health and longevity.
  • ·         Church bells banned under new EU noise pollution law.  Churches encouraged instead to introduce call to prayer from bell towers.
  • ·         Britain increases aid to China.  PM encourages China to buy Scotland.
  • ·         Nick Clegg visits Oppland to raise his profile in run-up to election.
  • ·         Sub-Continent swept by 10th cyclone in three weeks. 
  • ·         IPCC assembly in Barbados expected to mull weather data for further five weeks before commenting on climate change.
  • ·         24 hour Scottish election programme on ITV watched in England by fewer than 1m viewers.
  • ·         Scotland votes to stay in the UK.  First Minister calls the vote ‘unclear’ as only teenagers turned out to vote.
  • ·         Man in London jailed under EU human rights legislation for wearing T-shirt with ‘I am heterosexual’ slogan.
  • ·         Scottish First Minister voted off Strictly Come Dancing in first round.
  • ·         Samsung launches new 3¾in tablet with 1.1TB memory, 12.5Mb camera and 32” projector.
  • ·         European Court of Human Rights rules at least 40% of upper deck passengers on London buses must be female.
  • ·         To public sighs of relief, William announces Kate pregnant.  PM proposes launch of Christmas shopping celebrations.
  • ·         Kingston on Thames bans images of Father Christmas and religious themes from Happy Shopping celebrations,.
  • ·         Someone who once appeared in a Smashing Pumpkins video wins Strictly Come Dancing.
  • ·         Legislation passed banning frisking, after 2 MPs found to have claimed expenses for attending frisk clubs.  Daily Mail publishes 8-page spread of simulated photographs of frisking MPs.
  • ·         Duchess of York seeks compensation from British Government as her ‘Feeling Frisky’ fitness video is removed from shelves on its launch day.
  • ·         Conservative Party offers to accept 5 Ministerial posts in UKIP Government.
  • ·         Labour Party offers to require only 1 Ministerial post in UKIP Government as long as it’s not Ed Balls.
  • ·         TV series in Icelandic about daily life of wages clerk in Greenland oil camp a surprise hit in UK.
  • ·         High Streets entirely empty as population settles down to Christmas shopping online.
  • ·         Nick Clegg visits Greenland.
  • ·         Mother sues Essex County Council for banning nativity plays in primary schools after she had ‘already bought crocodile outfit and everything.’
  • ·         Birmingham man sues ITV for not showing any Die Hard movies for 4 successive weeks.
  • ·         UK gripped by blizzards and 4 feet of snow in London.
  • ·         IPCC assembly sends message of support to UK from Fiji explaining the cyclical nature of seasons and denying any link with climate change.
  • ·         European Court of Human Rights bans smoking outside pubs and restaurants unless at least 40% of smokers are male.
  • ·         Shoppers visit High Streets in post-Christmas rush as Amazon trucks snowbound.
  • ·         BBC admits one of its presenters is not gay.
  • ·         US and British troops finally leave Afghanistan, declaring the 13 year campaign ‘the greatest military success since Iraq’. 
  • ·         Women disappear from streets throughout Afghanistan.
  • ·         Sharp drop in world price of heroin.

A Happy New Year to all my readers!


  1. My prediction that 2014 would come immediately after 2013 appears to be correct!!

    Happy New Year, Neil !!

  2. Your sense of humour is delicious. A few times you made me laugh out loud. You must drive your wife nuts with your observations. Who is Nick Clegg. I dated a Nick Cleghorn in high school but they probably aren't related. He would be 73 now.

    1. Different one I think, Karyn. This one is our Deputy Prime MInister, a Lib Dem in our current coalition government.

  3. Neil I think you overlooked China buying New Zealand? No wait, my mistake, they already have.

    Happy New Year to you and yours too.

    1. Happy New Year to you too, Lois. Sorry - only just found your comment. Yes, know what you mean about China!