The End Of The World
Week 10

James Leavey's


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By James Leavey

Thereís a lot thatís been bugging me this week, in more ways than one. Western Europe has been invaded by a supercolony of Argentian ants who, unlike the silly bureaucrats who reputedly run the European Union, represent the largest co-operative unit of individual organism. The ĎArgiesí, as we Brits used to call them, in the bad old days of the Falkland War conflict, have collectively driven out the 20 or more indigenous species in an area that stretches from Italy, through the south of France, around the coast of, and up the Atlantic coast of Portugal. And none of them smoke.

Fortunately, a second smaller supercolony of Argentian ants has also been identified in the Catalan region of Spain and around Barcelona, and scientists say these ants are more than happy to make war on their compatriots. If I could only teach them to smoke Havanas, what a great ally we would have.

Any day now, ĎArgies Number Oneí will come goosestepping through the Channel Tunnel to invade Britain. Thatís if they donít mind joining the endless queue of illegal immigrants who have been coming on one-way shopping trips here since the Chunnel opened.

Only last week a Eurostar Business Class passenger was bitten on the train, halfway between England and France, by a venomous tropical spider. Surely itís time to introduce smoking on that beleagured pan-European train Ė then passengers could at least defend themselves with the burning end of whatever theyíre puffing. Or, if they meet an Argie Fire Ant, light up their favourite tobacco.

As if all that wasnít bad enough, climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions (not from cigarettes!) could apparently lead to an Everglades-style environment in Britain, in which previously alien species such as alligators and salamanders could thrive, by 2080. Malaria-bearing mosquitoes are expected daily in London, which may soon resemble the Florida swamps.

Time to light up my next double corona, and burn those little rascals right out of the sky. Just as long as they donít fall into my glass of Malt whisky. And, of yes, I think the moment has come to fill in that bloody Chunnel - it's more trouble than it's worth.

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