ALEXANDER Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, John Logie Baird... the greatest minds in WoS came up with an invention last night which, I am convinced, will push these old codgers into the dustbin of history. It shouldn't take a genius to work out that this "Eureka" moment came about in that Academy of learning better known as The Yard.
It all began with the Wonderful One himself, Withers, who was telling the Prince of Darkness, the Fab BB, The Voice of God and myself about a conversation he had been having with Rosey the previous evening when both were, I understand, rather tired and emotional from a long day on the alcohol.
The subject matter got on to crisps with Withers posing the quite understandable question: "Why the hell did anyone invent Prawn Cocktail crisps - and who eats them?"
Apparently a new barmaid joined in the conversation, explaining that they were her favourite flavour.
Withers wasn't convinced: "No one says Prawn Cocktail flavour are their favourite crisps. They don't taste of prawns for a start."
It was a worthy point which had the rest of us nodding in agreement.
I surmised that Prawn Cocktail was the only starter that had been turned into a crisp and that perhaps we could come up with a new range of potato chips based solely on this premise. You could have stuffed garlic mushroom flavour, melon flavour, pate on toast flavour...
Then it hit us, all at once. Withers and I looked at each other, the lightbulbs going on above our heads, and we both cried: "Soup crisps".
You could have a packet of tomato flavour, or oxtail flavour, or chicken flavour crisps with a container of hot water in a vacuum flask. You could then tip the crisps into the bowl, pour over the water and the crisps would melt. Then you could eat the soup.
Sadly the idea doesn't quite retain its appeal in the cold light of day although our casual sub Emma was quite keen to develop it further. "You could have a full three course lunch of just crisps," she suggested. "Imagine it: stuffing crisps, roast potato crisps, yorkshire pudding flavour..." Sounds like the idea might run and run.
Good old Captain Mainwaring, our blonds-have-more-fun features editor, has taken us rather literally when we have chirped in with comments about "Son of Len". So much so that she nearly asked the Terminator-like security guard how his Dad was. At this we were all falling about laughing. I think, somewhere, the captain had missed the point. Son of Len isn't really Len's son, you see. He just has an identical jobsworth attitude, possibly having spent his apprenticeship under Len Senior.
Of course, if he discovered his nickname Son of Len might be even less amenable. The writers are quite glad that the captain never actually struck up a conversation with him. The repercussions, particularly with regard to obtaining a pool car, could have been horrendous.
Interestingly, Son of Len has recently been much more cheery, perhaps because his mam has been putting his favourite filling into the sandwiches he caringly removes from his lunchbox every day - it's quite eery when he smiles at you, like the Terminator turning from baddie to goody between parts one and two. You are left wondering when he will turn back again, like his alter-ego Arnold Schwarzennegger does in Terminator Part Three, Rise of the Machines.