Under Starter’s Orders

The news that Dr Rowan Williams has decided to go and get a life before it’s too late naturally threw most commentators into a flat spin, but here at 30DAYs we just got down to the serious and necessary business of how one might make a guinea or two (or, better still, a killing) out of the whole shenanigans. And so it was good news indeed when we found our friendly neighbourhood turf accountant, Ladbrokes, quoting odds on who would be the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury. Before placing a bet, though, we had to raise some cash, so we carefully made a note of the relevant page on the Ladbrokes website and got a begging letter off to CBS without further ado.

Sometime later, we went back to the Ladbrokes website … only to discover that the page in question seemed to have disappeared! And down the left hand side of the page, the menu seemed to have shed a whole category . . .

What on earth could it mean? A rash of suspicious-looking bets at the Bradford branch? An outbreak of good taste at Ladbrokes Head Office? Whatever the reason, it seems at least at the moment that all bets are off.

Still, as every skoolboy kno, Google is your friend, particularly when it comes to the supply of cached images of web pages (left) which have unaccountably got lost in the ether . . .

Tempting as it might be to stick the family silver on Dr Peter Mullen, we’re not at all sure that odds of 20/1 are that realistic, especially as he’s already older than the statutory retirement age for bishops!

Mind you, 30DAys has never really liked to let things like the disappearance of a web page to get in its way, so off we went to the Emerald Isle, where www.paddypower.com (below) was more than happy to accommodate us – and with a much wider choice of candidates:

Obviously, we don’t want to skew the process by letting on where we’ve placed our stake but one thing we can say is that it certainly wasn’t on Dr Barry Morgan.

Oh no. Perish. The. Thought.

Compare & Contrast . . .

30DAYs has of course always stood for balance, which is why we draw your attention to two current online petitions doing the rounds at present.

For starters, you find one sponsored by Colin Coward’s curious little lobby group Changing Attitude at www.tiny. cc/ChangingAttitude (we’ve abreviated it for you) which asks that the ‘House of Bishops and General Synod allow priests in the Church of England to choose to bless civil partnerships in church’. Already, this exciting and, er, visionary suggestion – which, we are assured, is against Government policy (rather like airborne pigs) – has attracted no less than 1,543 signatures – and those in the two long months which have passed since its launch into obscurity on February 3rd.

Or you may prefer something more up-to-the-minute and altogether more mainstream! Out there in the ether for something like three weeks less than the above is a petition from the Coalition for Marriage at www.c4m.org.uk, which has attracted 304,631 signatures (as of this moment) affirming the following simple statement: I support the legal definition of marriage which is the voluntary union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. I oppose any attempt to redefine it.

And so, in the interests of balance, one might usefully ask what the odds might be of getting an Archbishop of Canterbury in 2013 who will be responsive to these extraordinary figures and ready to face down the political elite? You can get the current answer over at www.paddypower.com of course – but preferably only after you’ve voted!

Copy for 30 Days should reach the FiF
office by the 10th day of the month: