Come play a festive parlour game with me, the answers are easy - John McLellan

Hogmanay is cancelled, the Christmas Market might have to shut early and The First Minister might have us all locked down as soon as the last turkey curry has been scoffed on Boxing Day. So here’s a new parlour game to while away these dark days.

By John McLellan
Thursday, 23rd December 2021, 7:41 am
Edinburgh's Hogmanay celebrations are cancelled this year due to the pandemic, but John McLellan has come up with a way to pass away the time. PIC: Ian Gregorson Photography.

It’s called Fantasy Civic Leader, and all you do is pretend you are running a big local authority and pick the correct answers.

1. Your budget is hammered by the Scottish Government so you:

a. Joke that the Council tax will go up by less than 15 per cent.

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b. Thank the Scottish Government for everything they do for you.

c. Blame the Tories and Brexit.

2. You only manage half of a promise to build thousands of new affordable homes and you:

a. Pretend all is well and keep schtum.

b.Let your housing chief insist it was all a big misunderstanding.

c.Blame the Tories and Brexit.

3.Your big plan for the city is widely recognised as inadequate, so you:

a.Just insist it’s incredibly ambitious and hope no-one will notice.

b.Let the planning bloke explain it all because he used to be in the building trade

c.Blame the Tories and Brexit

4.Your plans to tackle poverty rely on building homes on land you haven’t got, so you:

a.Hope your planning bloke is right that landowners will cut you a deal

b.Quietly hope they’ll be built in the neighbouring council areas like they’ve always been.

c.Blame the Tories and Brexit

5.Thousands of people object to your “ambitious” traffic plans, so you:

a.Insist they’ve got it wrong and it’s all for the best

b.Argue the plans are incredibly important because otherwise we’re all going to die

c.Blame the Tories and Brexit

6.The tourism industry is under threat from your polices, and you decide to:

a.Tell them it’s all for their benefit, and we’ve got a lot of nice old buildings anyway

b.Do what the Greens tell you because their votes are incredibly important

c.Blame the Tories and Brexit

7.Traders say you are recking their livelihoods and you don’t understand business, so you:

a.Ring up that nice lady at the Chamber of Commerce and ask her to explain it to you.

b.Reckon if you say business is incredibly important at every opportunity that will fix it.

c.Blame the Tories and Brexit

8.A political associate belittles one of your colleagues in public, so you:

a.Agree, but keep schtum because you think it’s your colleague’s fault anyway

b.Pretend it hasn’t happened

c.Blame the Tories for causing bother in the first place. And Brexit

9.A report finds your authority does not have a safe culture for the staff, so you:

a.Ignore the fact you didn’t want the report in the first place

b.Insist everything is much better than it used to be

c.Blame the Tories for playing politics. And Brexit

10.You are accused of being a puppet for the chief executive, so you:

a.Ask the chief executive what to do about it

b.Ask the chief executive to write an incredibly angry letter to the Standards Commission

c.Write an incredibly angry letter to the Standards Commission blaming the Tories. And Brexit.

The great thing about this game is if your answers are all As, Bc or Cs or even a mixture, you are superbly qualified to run a major Scottish council. A new career awaits. Happy Christmas!

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