July 3, 2009

Top Gear is a national institution. Its role in contemporary culture and society extends far beyond covering cars on TV. Top Gear embodies and validates the spirit of brash male egotism with gleeful zest and panache.

How sadly predictable, then that a bunch of women should now be making a fuss just because raffishly tousled presenter James May suggested on air that teenage males facing problems buying motor insurance should pass themselves off as their fathers.

Some lady-journalist called Jill Insley took time off from more suitably feminine activities to pen a piece denouncing May for this harmless and helpful hint to would-be junior fraudsters, roping in Hayley Parsons the lady-CEO of gocompare.com to join her shrill outcry.

The technical term for the little ruse proposed by the romantically shabby Mr May, Ms Insley pointed out (in a piece no Top Gear viewer will have seen, since it appeared in lefty rag The Guardian), is fronting.

Ms Parsons chimed in earnestly with the observation that, “fronting is a common fraud and we would urge parents to avoid the practice as, if found out, the consequences could be severe.”

For heaven’s sake ladies, where’s your sense of humour?!

All he said was: “It soon dawned on us that the only realistic way of getting covered when you are 17 is by going on your parents’ insurance. So we got back on the phones pretending to be dad.”


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