Q How do you suggest I treat a dog with piles?
A Nicely. Believe me, they’re no fun.
Q I am going to France this summer but am worried about the food – will we have to eat snails?
A It’s a misconception that the French eat lots of snails. That’s a simplistic and, dare I say it, xenophobic attitude. Everyone knows it’s songbirds the froggies eat.
Q My teenage son wants ferrets but I’m worried about the smell.
A Don’t worry, they should get used to it.
Q A neighbour was having such problems with people wandering on his land he blocked a footpath with a pile of manure. What’s your view on this?
A Blocking a designated footpath with manure is an appalling thing to do. After all, walkers could simply step round a pile of manure. To be really effective, large agricultural implements should have been put there.
Q How can I make my discontent known to our vicar – he’s become ‘close’ with a lady in the village and she’s even been spotted leaving the church in the early hours.
A Try not to be suspicious. Remember, rumours may have no foundation whatsoever in truth. It’s probably only his organ she’s interested in.
Q My wife is learning the piano and it’s driving me mad. She practises every night and I can’t sleep because of the sound of her tinkling on the keyboard.
A My old dad once tinkled on the keyboard. There again, he once tinkled on the carpet, too. And the stairs. Bladder problems run in the family. Literally.
Q I’m in dispute with a neighbour over the cost of repairs to a barn which our families have always shared. They want it re-roofed, but this would be too costly for us.
A Property law on issues like this is a minefield, drawing on case law and local custom. The best advice I can give you is to consult a solicitor. Or to sneak out there one night and raze the damn thing to the ground with a back-actor.
Q I’ve just failed all my exams at agricultural college. What should I do?
A Be the nicest you’ve ever been to your mum and dad.
Q How can I cure my phobia of thunder and lightning?
A This condition is not as uncommon as you might think. The secret is to try to remember that only a tiny handful of people are hit by lightning. Of course, if you are one of the unlucky ones, you’ll fry on the spot, cooking from the inside out, all your vital organs charred and frazzled to a cinder.
Q I’m tempted to look “online” for love but feel embarrassed. Should I be?
A No, dating websites are visited by many perfectly normal, decent people who because of their busy lifestyles find this the best way to meet like-minded individuals. And a lot of right weirdos who wouldn’t have a cat in hell’s chance of getting looked at a second time in the flesh.