They are the most inscrutable of all the European races. Bret Dawson updates his classic series of reports.
When the Swiss are bored and eager for a fresh and invigorating distraction, they turn to the business pages for relief. Nothing gets Swiss adrenaline pumping like a quick macroeconomic survey of the ins and outs and ups and downs of trade surpluses in the Euro zone.
It is important that the Swiss get their adrenaline pumping regularly, as adrenaline is a hormone secreted by the adrenal medulla in response to stress, and if allowed to accumulate atop the kidneys it causes bloating and discomfort.
And if there is one thing the Swiss cannot tolerate, it is bloating.
Although there are really eight things the Swiss cannot tolerate, not just one. You want to know what the other seven are?
Things the Swiss cannot tolerate:
1. Game show contestants who kiss the host without first using an alcohol wipe.
1a. An alcohol-moistened individually wrapped moist towelette wipe.
1b. No, a cotton ball will not do. Cotton balls begin their lives as tufts of fibre protruding from plants which themselves protrude from dirt/soil.
1c. And dirt/soil begins its life as the endproduct of the digestive tracts of large domesticated ruminants like cattle and oxen.
1d. And no, poo does not meet ISO 9004 standards for quality management systems.
3. The French, on account of their moustaches.
3a. I always thought it was the Turks who had moustaches.
3b. That may well be the case. Turks, French, who can tell the difference?
3c. Well, the Turks speak Turkish and live in Turkey, and the French speak unintelligible gibberish and live up the stairs from a coffee shop.
3d. Which one?
3e. Starbucks, probably. The French always enjoy a nice dark roast.
4. Incomplete lists.
5. Bloating (see above).
6a. ISO 9004 certified breakfast pastries require only jam and/or butter.
7. That is all.