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Jan 31, 2012

A Problem Halved, with Auntie Veal

Dear Auntie Veal,

I am at my wits’ end.  My husband has taken to spending long hours in the potting shed with nothing but a copy of The Racing Times and a tub of Swarfega for company.  I feel rejected, and I can’t get this sump oil off my hands.  Please help.


Mucky-knuckled of Toller Porcorum

Dear Mucky,

This is exactly why I have always forbidden my Teddy to have a shed.  Privacy brings out the worst in us.  Left alone we will get up to either nothing much or no good at all. Give the Queen five minutes in a locked room and she’ll have her fingers somewhere she shouldn’t quicker than you can say HRH. 

It’s human nature to be absolutely filthy and men will always seek their castles.  Even as I write, Teddy stares balefully from his little sofa cushion fort.  He’s in a bit of a snit because I wouldn’t let him listen to the Today programme, but he knows full well John Humphrys gives him wind.

Darling, you must find yourself a hobby.  Everyone knows Jennifer didn’t get over Brad until she took up competitive toad breeding.  Now she’s known the world over for the plumpness of her Natterjacks.  Develop some peccadilloes of your own!  Why not look around the home for inspiration?  You can do wonders with a spatula and the pet hair nozzle on the Hoover.

To sum up, Mucky, in my experience there are very few women who can compete with a tub of Swarfega. 

You’re Welcome!

Auntie Veal

P.S. As far as the sump oil is concerned, try a vigorously applied olive oil and sea salt scrub.

If you’re in a sticky situation and need some advice, send your problem to


  1. jennifer anniston is one of my favorite friends. true story.

  2. Dear Auntie Veal,

    I myself always find a strong cup of Swarfega confirms the Willpower to Start the Day.

    (Goes particularly well with a spoonful of Marmite I don't mind saying.)

  3. My goodness, that's a fancy tub of Swarfega! I find it goes delightfully with Disaronno and ice.