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A Man of Few Words - by Swan Morrison


I am an ancillary activities operative for the English Football Association.

The need for my role was identified when the FA reviewed their expenditure on salaries. It was noted, for example, that the manager of the England Football Team was paid four million pounds each year. It was agreed that the particular combination of knowledge, skills and abilities required for this role justified exceptional remuneration. It was also noted, however, that such expertise was not exercised in a continuous manner throughout the working day. Brilliant team selection and tactical planning might occur for a few minutes at a time, but most activities undertaken were mundane - things which could easily be done at much lesser cost by any idiot. This is where I come in.

I am employed, at the national minimum wage, to sit anxiously in the dugout during international matches demonstrating jubilation at goals for England and desolation at goals against. I also shout periodically at the referee and act as an apologist for the team at subsequent press conferences. In addition, I am responsible for providing salacious material for the tabloid newspapers by conducting indiscreet sexual liaisons.

To maximise my productivity, I also replace key players on the pitch for activities not requiring first rate ball control or tactical genius. If opposition players might score from a position in our penalty box, then I rush onto the pitch and viciously chop them to the ground. If a refereeing decision goes against England, then it is my role to abuse the referee until I am dragged away by team members. During my most successful match I was sent off five times.

AAOs are, of course, recruited by others who employ highly paid staff. Traditionally posts of AAO for major rock bands had been much sought after. Nights of unlimited drugs, alcohol and sex meant that many people would undertake the job for free. In recent years, however, the position has become much less popular, requiring, as it does, tireless effort for third world charities. The job of AAO for celebrities is also currently very unpopular as in most cases this requires substitution for the employer on a 24/7 basis - most celebrities possessing no specific skills or expertise which cannot be emulated by an AAO. Fortunately this level of skill frequently does not even require a homo sapien and so has afforded development opportunities for the higher primates - also for lower primates and some single-celled organisms. The revelation that humans share fifty percent of their genetic material with bananas has opened further avenues for celebrity replacement.

The pinnacle of AAO success has been scaled by those who replace world leaders for those parts of their duties which do not require exceptional international statesmanship. Worryingly, the 24/7 problem described above has been a drawback in recruitment by many countries. I am not afraid of hard work, however, and am delighted that I shall shortly be taking up a post as AAO to the US President. I am currently compiling a list of all who have annoyed me over the years to pass to US Airforce, Bomber Command.