Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Bathmatwatch: A Nation Mourns

It is my sad duty to inform you all that the bath mat has disappeared. Unconfirmed reports at 1145GMT suggested that the bath mat was not there any more. This was confirmed at 1150GMT on the way back from the shop. A thorough search was made under cars and in nearby front gardens, but to no avail. There was a glimmer of hope that perhaps it had gone back to its original home, but that was cruelly snatched away with the circulation of this photograph earlier this afternoon:

Tony Blair has paid tribute to the bath mat in the House of Commons, saying “It was the people's bath mat”. The Queen has ordered all flags on royal palaces to be flown at half-mast, and all bets are off for the Christmas number one as Elton John has announced that he will be recording Bath Mat in the Wind.

The street where the drama of the last five weeks took place was quiet this afternoon, though it is understood that floral tributes are now being laid by the wall at the bath mat's original home.

Nearby streets are suspiciously clean, but when asked to comment on the movements of street sweepers in the past 24 hours, a local council representative said, “Er, I'm not really sure. Can I call you back?” No call came, and one angry fan has already pointed the finger of suspicion, declaring, “It was the street sweeper, in the road, with a broom”. Meanwhile, Mohamed Al Fayed has blamed Prince Philip for the disappearance, and Oliver Stone is busily scrutinising the grassy knoll area in the upper right of the photo.

This is not a time for recrimination though. This is a time to remember the happy times that the bath mat has brought us all and to reflect on its passing. There will now be three days of official mourning – please sign the book of condolences below. As a mark of respect, the Scrappy-Loo and matching bath mat (available in blue or cream) will now be donated at random to one lucky mourner.