John Docker: This EU law could affect deliveries

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They say there’s no fool like an old fool and the older I get the more foolish I seem to become. The other day I renewed my road tax on-line. It doesn’t quite seem the same does it ? Now you don’t even get a piece of paper for your money. Never mind, it gives all those speed cops out there something to do – electronically checking your number with the DVLA as you whiz past. I’d have thought they’ve quite enough on their number-plates already, but there you go, that’s progress for you. Now, where was I? Oh yes, on-line licence renewal. Much better than trolling along to the post office, done it before - easy-peasy, so why was it not accepting my reference number? It’s printed big enough even for my aging eyes to read. But after three attempts I was getting pretty miffed. Must be due to the new system I thought, why can’t they leave things alone these days? I fumed. Then daylight dawned. I was looking at last year’s application form. Definitely a senior moment!

On the political scene, I was surprised Ed Miliband opened his recent speech to faithful followers with a quote from Freidrich Nietzsche - “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” Judging by the rest of the speech I would have thought another of the controversial German philosopher’s sayings would have been more apt - “The demand to be loved is the greatest of all arrogant presumptions.”

Back to the serious stuff, I didn’t think it would happen this year but after a shaky start, I have to admit I’m hooked on ‘Strictly’ again. But as it’s the run up to Christmas and the ever present question mark about Santa squeezing down all those chimneys, does Auntie Beeb really expect us to believe the results show on Sunday is live? I mean, doing all that make up, body spraying and hair styling again – not to mention gathering the singers, musicians and the technicians, hardly seems worth the effort just for another 45 minutes.

And I’m sure I’m not the 
only viewer to have spotted the occasional slip of the tongue. But I’m a great believer in escapism and do hope I’m wrong, otherwise the next thing I’ll discover is that I’ve been wasting my time with the glass of milk and mince pies all these years!

Speaking of which, I see concerns are being raised about the possibility of Festive deliveries being disrupted because of a shortage of lorry drivers caused by the introduction of the new EU Certificate of Professional Competence. According to the Freight Transport Association some 20,000 drivers have taken early retirement or moved to other jobs since the certificate became mandatory in September. Are there no pies the EU doesn’t have a finger in – mince or otherwise?

Which reminds me, I wonder what six-year old computer whiz-kid Ayan Qureshi will find in his Christmas stocking - another Apple to byte perhaps? (Sorry!)