The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post
Comedian Phil Evans is from Ammanford. He is known as the man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy.
Too young or too old to be safe?
I almost didn’t write this week’s column, because yesterday, as I was reading my newspaper, drinking coffee and enjoying a blueberry muffin - that course I took in multi-tasking has paid off - the following item made me choke on the muffin and almost drown in coffee as it sprayed out of my nose...
“The oldest person in Wales to hold a full driving licence is 104-years-old and there are more than 250,000 people aged 70 or over who have a licence, including 12 over 100 years of age.”
Before my readers with grey, white or notta-lotta hair get ready to dip their pens in green ink and send me hate mail (I passed all their previous letters to The Editor because no one ever writes to him) if they read on, they’ll see I’m not being ‘ageist’.
In fact, if I had a hat I’d take it off to anyone still driving at 100 and over because they must be extremely competent.
I say this because motorists over 70 have to renew their licence every three years and older drivers are legally required to declare whether they are fit to drive.
The rules seem pretty stringent, because more than 3,000 drivers in Wales aged 70 or over have had their driving licence revoked or refused in the last three years due to a medical condition.
However, a poll conducted by the insurance industry revealed that 45% of Welsh drivers disagree with how the law currently stands.
Nearly half of them (presumably individuals for whom the age of 70 is many years away) called for older drivers to retake their driving test as well as renew their licence every three years.
Those questioned were obviously unaware that, according to the AA, it’s actually drivers under 24 who are more likely to have an accident.
So, why not apply the same argument about retaking a driving test to 20-year-olds if they passed their test when they were 17?
Having digested the article, along with the remains of the blueberry muffin, I found an even more surprising fact.
In 2015, the number of drivers over 100 years old on our roads numbered 200.
Think about that.
If every one of them passed their test at the average age of, say, 20, it means that between them...get this...those 200 centenarians have 16,000 years driving experience!
Aha! Now you’ve just sprayed your coffee through your nose!
For the first year as far as I can remember, there wasn't even one chocolate Easter Egg in the house. How times have changed.
Being a recovering chocoholic, like so many of my readers, at traditional times like these it seems a shame not to join in with tradition. Why can't times of celebration involve us consuming lettuce, or giving gifts of salad?
But my new found determination held me in good stead, well, up until yesterday, when I stumbled across a two for a pound special offer in my local supermarket. I couldn't ignore a bargain like that.
Rest assured I gave one away and the other now sits on my kitchen table, it seems to be staring at me every time I walk passed.
So far so good, I've managed to ignore it.
However, this could all end in tears. Let's see how good my will power is.
The Queen is 90:
I'm sure there must be something wrong with the postal service at the moment as I'm still awaiting the delivery of my personal invitation to attend The Queen’s 90th birthday party.
She was on the TV this week, still horse riding without a helmet on (when did royalty become immune to head injuries? I'll drop her a text about that now).
Last time I saw such an elderly lady without a hat on horseback was in my home town of Ammanford.
Gipsy Rose Lee was trotting over the Rec on her way to the local scout hut to undertake Tarot card and tea leaf readings.
The ladies of the valleys would form an orderly queue clutching their recently emptied tea cup and saucer.
What would the future hold?
Would she see true love in those soggy tea leaves?
Unfortunately, due to the invention and increased demand for tea bags, her business activities declined rapidly.
It's a shame that she didn't see that coming – considering the career path that she had taken.
You can follow Phil Evans on Twitter @philevanswales and www.philevans.co.uk