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Tough Interview Questions

Job review company Glassdoor have compiled a list of the toughest interview questions by country. Here are the toughest from the UK for 20...

Wish I had a home for Christmas

For the breathing spaces project.

Christmas Quotes

A special for Christmas Day:-

"Christmas is a race to see which gives out first - your money or your feet."

"Santa Claus wears a red suit, he must be a communist. And a beard and long hair, he must be a hippie. And what is in that pipe that he's smoking?"

"Let us remember that the Christmas heart is a giving heart, a wide open heart that thinks of others first. The birth of the baby Jesus stands as the most significant event in all history, because it has meant the pouring into a sick world of the healing medicine of love which has transformed all manner of hearts for almost two thousand years... Underneath all the bulging bundles is this beating Christmas heart." George Matthew Adams

"Let me see if I've got this Santa business straight. You say he wears a beard, has no discernible source of income and flies to cities all over the world under cover of darkness? You sure this guy isn't laundering illegal drug money?" Tom Armstrong

"Once again we find ourselves enmeshed in the Holiday Season, that very special time of year when we join with our loved ones in sharing centuries-old traditions such as trying to find a parking space at the mall. We traditionally do this in my family by driving around the parking lot until we see a shopper emerge from the mall, then we follow her, in very much the same spirit as the Three Wise Men, who 2,000 years ago followed a star, week after week, until it led them to a parking space." Dave Barry

"Santa Claus has the right idea. Visit people once a year." Victor Borge

"Dear Lord, I've been asked, nay commanded, to thank Thee for the Christmas turkey before us... a turkey which was no doubt a lively, intelligent bird... a social being... capable of actual affection... nuzzling its young with almost human- like compassion. Anyway, it's dead and we're gonna eat it. Please give our respects to its family... " Berke Breathed

"There has been only one Christmas - the rest are anniversaries." W.J. Cameron

"Christmas is a time when everybody wants his past forgotten and his present remembered." Phyllis Diller

"What I don't like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day." Phyllis Diller

"Christmas at my house is always at least six or seven times more pleasant than anywhere else. We start drinking early. And while everyone else is seeing only one Santa Claus, we'll be seeing six or seven." W.C. Fields

"I never believed in Santa Claus because I knew no white man would be coming into my neighborhood after dark." Dick Gregory

"Mail your packages early so the post office can lose them in time for Christmas." Johnny Carson

"I once bought my kids a set of batteries for Christmas with a note on it saying, toys not included." Bernard Manning

"The Supreme Court has ruled that they cannot have a nativity scene in Washington, D.C. This wasn't for any religious reasons. They couldn't find three wise men and a virgin." Jay Leno

"A Christmas shopper's complaint is one of long-standing." Jay Leno

"Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love." Hamilton Wright Mabi

"I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month." Harlan Miller

"There is no ideal Christmas; only the one Christmas you decide to make as a reflection of your values, desires, affections, traditions." Bill McKibben

"Christmas begins about the first of December with an office party and ends when you finally realize what you spent, around April fifteenth of the next year." P. J. O'Rourke

"There is a remarkable breakdown of taste and intelligence at Christmas time. Mature, responsible grown men wear neckties made of holly leaves and drink alcoholic beverages with raw egg yolks and cottage cheese in them." P.J. O'Rourke.

"Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful." Norman Vincent Peale

"Peace on earth will come to stay, when we live Christmas every day." Helen Steiner Rice

"The one thing women don't want to find in their stockings on Christmas morning is their husband." Joan Rivers

"I stopped believing in Santa Claus when I was six. Mother took me to see him in a department store and he asked for my autograph." Shirley Temple

"Oh look, yet another Christmas TV special! How touching to have the meaning of Christmas brought to us by cola, fast food, and beer... Who'd have ever guessed that product consumption, popular entertainment, and spirituality would mix so harmoniously?" Bill Watterson, Calvin & Hobbes

"Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree. In the eyes of children, they are all 30 feet tall." Larry Wilde

"The best of all gifts around any Christmas tree: the presence of a happy family all wrapped up in each other."

"If there is no joyous way to give a festive gift, give love away."

Funny names

Some of them are very obvious, some of them I've given you some help, but if there are any you don't understand, or if there are any I've missed (clean ones) let me know in the comments:-

Adam Zapel (adam's apple)
Al Bino (albino)
Al Dente
Al Fresco
Alf A. Romeo (Alpha Romeo)
Ali Katt (alley cat)
Amanda Lynn (a mandolin)
Andy Friese (antifreeze)
Anita Bath (I need a bath)
Anna Prentice (an apprentice)
Anna Recksiek (anorexic)
Anna Sasin (an assassin)
Anne Teak (antique)
Annette Curtain (a net curtain)
Aretha Holly (a wreath of holly)
Barb Dwyer (barbed wire)
Barb E. Dahl (Barbie doll)
Barbara Seville (barber of Seville)
Barry Cade (barricade)
Bea Minor (be a miner)
Ben Dover (bend over)
Eileen Dover (I leaned over)
Bill Board
Bill Ding (building)
Bill Loney (baloney)
Bob Apple
Bob Katz (bob cats)
Tom Katz (tom cats)
Kitty Katz (kitty cats)
Brandon Cattell (branding cattle)
Brandy D. Cantor (brandy decanter)
Brock Lee (broccoli)
Brooke Trout (brook trout)
Cam Payne (campaign)
Candy Barr (candy bar)
Candy Kane (candy cane)
*Carol Tune.
Carrie Oakey (karaoke)
Cheri Pitts (cherry pits)
Chris P. Bacon (crispy bacon)
Claire Annette (clarinet)
Constance Noring (constant snoring)
Crystal Ball
Dan D. Lyons (dandelions)
Dan Druff (dandruff)
Dick Burns
Dinah Soares (dinosaurs)
Don Key (donkey)
Doug Graves (dug graves)
Doug Hole (dug hole)
Dr. Croak
Dr. Payne (Dr Pain)
Drew Peacock
Duane Pipe (drain pipe)
Dusty Rhodes (dusty roads)
Edna May (or may not)
Earl E. Bird (early bird)
Earl Lee Riser (early riser)
Easton West (east and west)
Ella Vader (elevator)
Ford Parker
Forrest Green (forest green)
Gaye Barr (gay bar)
Gail Storm
Hazel Nutt (hazel nut)
Heidi Clare (I declare)
*Helen Beck (Hell and back)
Holly Day (holiday)
Holly Wood (Hollywood)
Hugh Jass (huge ass)
Jean Poole (gene pool)
Jed Dye (Jedi)
Jim Shorts (gym short)
Jo King (joking)
Justin Case (just in case)
*Justin Time (just in time)
Lance Boyle (lance boil)
Leigh King (leaking)
Marsha Mellow (marshmallow)
Marshall Law
Mary Christmas (merry christmas)
Max Power
May Day
May Furst (May first)
Mel Loewe (mellow)
Mike Stand
Minny van Gogh (mini van go)
Misty Waters
Misty Shore (along with Rocky and Sandy)
Mo Lestor (molester)
Mona Lott (moan a lot)
Muddy Waters
Myles Long (miles long)
Neil Down (kneel down)
Noah Lott (know a lot)
Norma Leigh Lucid (normally lucid)
Olive Yew (I love you)
Oliver Sutton (all of a sudden)
Orson Carte (horse and cart)
Otto Graf (autograph)
Owen Moore (owing more)
Paige Turner (page turner)
Pat Downe
Pearl Button
Pearl E. Gates (pearly gates)
Pearl E. White (pearly white)
Peg Legge (peg leg)
Penny Lane
Penny Wise
Polly Ester (polyester)
*Poppy Seeds
Ray Gunn
Raynor Schein (rain or shine)
Rick Shaw (rickshaw)
Rip Torn
Rob Banks
Rocky Rhoades
Roman Holiday
Rose Bush
Rose Gardner
Rusty Carr
Sally Forth
Sandy Banks
Sonny Day (sunny day)
Tanya Hyde (tan your hide)
Terry Bull (terrible)
Tim Burr (timber)
Tom Morrow (tomorrow)
Trina Forest (tree in a forest)
Ty Coon
Ty Knotts (tie knots)
Warren Peace (war and peace)
Will Power
Willie Stroker
Woody Forrest

*Added by visitors. Please feel free to add your own, they might make it onto the list.

Thanks to Bildgesmythe and Peter Jordan for their additions.

Letters to the council

These are quotes from letters allegedly collected by staff at London's Islington Council Housing Department. Written by council tenants to the housing department, requesting maintenance attention of various sorts, they are the stuff of legend now. If you read something into the words, that's entirely down to you:-

"I wish to report that tiles are missing from the roof of the outside toilet and I think it was bad wind the other night that blew them off."

"Our lavatory seat is broken in half and now it is in three pieces."

"I am writing on behalf of my sink which is coming away from the wall."

"I am still having trouble with smoke in my built in drawers."

"The lavatory seat is cracked, where do I stand?"

"I wish to complain that my father hurt his ankle very badly when he put his foot in the hole in his back passage."

"Their 18 year old son is continuously banging his balls against my fence."

"I want some repairs done to my cooker as it has backfired and burnt my knob off."

"Will you please send someone to mend the garden path. My wife tripped and fell on it yesterday and now she is pregnant."

"I request your permission to remove my drawers in the kitchen."

"Can you please tell me when the repairs will be done as my wife is about to become an expectant mother."

"The toilet is blocked and we cannot bath the children until it is cleared."

"This is to let you know that our lavatory seat is broken and we can't get BBC2."

"Will you please send a man to look at my water, it is a funny colour and not fit to drink."

"Would you please send a man to repair my sprout. I am an old age pensioner and need it straight away."

"I want to complain about the farmer across the road; every morning at 6am his cock wakes me up and it's getting too much."

"The man next door has a large erection in the back garden, which is unsightly and dangerous."

"Our kitchen floor is damp. We have two children and would like a third so will you please send someone around to do something about it."

"I am a single woman living in a downstairs flat and would be pleased if you could do something about the noise made by the man I have on top of me every night."

"Please send a man with clean tools to finish the job and satisfy the wife."

"I have had the Clerk of the Works down on the floor six times, but still have no satisfaction."

"We are getting married in September and would like it in the garden before we move into the house."

If Microsoft Made Oven Dinners

The instructions would look something like this:-

You must first remove the plastic cover. By doing so you agree to accept and honour Microsoft rights to all TV dinners. You may not give anyone else a bite of your dinner (which would constitute an infringement of Microsoft's rights). You may, however, let others smell and look at your dinner and are encouraged to tell them how good it is.

If you have a PC microwave oven, insert the dinner into the oven. Set the oven using these keystrokes:

\mstv.dinn.//08.5min@50%heat// .

Then enter ms//start.cook_dindin/yummy\l/yum~yum-) gohot#cookme

If you have a Mac oven, insert the dinner and press start. The oven will set itself and cook the dinner.

If you have a Unix oven, insert the dinner, enter the ingredients of the dinner (found on the package label), the weight of the dinner, and the desired level of cooking and press start. The oven will calculate the time and heat and cook the dinner exactly to your specification.

Be forewarned that Microsoft dinners may crash, in which case your oven must be restarted. This is a simple procedure. Remove the dinner from the oven and enter the following:-


This process may have to be repeated. Try unplugging the microwave and then doing a cold reboot. If this doesn't work, contact your hardware vendor.

Many users have reported that the dinner tray is far too big, larger than the dinner itself, having many useless compartments, most of which are empty. These are for future menu items. If the tray is too large to fit in your oven you will need to upgrade your equipment.

Dinners are only available from registered outlets, and only the chicken variety is currently produced. If you want another variety, call Microsoft Help and they will explain that you really don't want another variety. Microsoft Chicken is all you really need.

Microsoft has disclosed plans to discontinue all smaller versions of their chicken dinners. Future releases will only be in the larger family size. Excess chicken may be stored for future use, but must be saved only in Microsoft approved packaging.

Microsoft promises a dessert with every dinner after '98. However, that version has yet to be released. Users have permission to get thrilled in advance. Microsoft dinners may be incompatible with other dinners in the freezer, causing your freezer to self-defrost. This is a feature, not a bug. Your freezer probably should have been defrosted anyway.