Mariah Carey. / REUTERS

Scoff mixture

Famous people can sometimes cross the line and, at times, they need to be pushed back a little

Peter Edgerton

Let's face it, it must be tough being famous. There you find yourself, flying hither and yon, surrounded by an odd assortment of liggers at all times, never knowing who your real friends are and only ever hearing the word 'no' when it's followed by "demand of yours will ever be denied to you". For this reason, we generally tend to forgive the childish caprices of celebrities, knowing that they're mostly just a desperate attempt to squeeze a little fun out of a largely desperate existence.

Sometimes though, we do find ourselves rubbing our eyes in disbelief at their antics and hoping against hope that they'll be knocked back into line, sharpish.

A stirring round of applause, then, is owed to the US Patent and Trademark Office which has seen sense and denied Mariah Carey the right to trademark the moniker 'Queen Of Christmas.'

At what point did the fifty-two- year-old vocal contortionist decide that, on the basis of one - not very good song, she might assume a royal title in order to reign over one of the most important shared traditions in the history of humanity?

Elizabeth Chan, another singer who had put in a legal challenge, got straight to the point: "If you knit a 'Queen of Christmas' sweater, you should be able to sell it on Etsy to somebody else so they can buy it for their grandma." Well, quite.

The prevalence of this type of nonsense quite clearly needs a solution and, luckily, I've thought of one. From now on, all record companies, film studios, football clubs, etc. should be legally obliged to employ a professional 'scoffer' i.e. someone who nips absurd demands in the bud by openly scoffing at them, preferably in front of other people and, most certainly, all over the social networks. "Ha, ha, ha!! ** (Fill in name) has just asked for the jelly to be removed from their Jaffa cakes in their dressing room. That won't be happening. Ha, ha, ha!!" "You've got to be kidding me! Just been to a restaurant with ** (name). Asked for greener peas like the ones his mum serves. Soon had the whole room laughing at him, including the manager and the chef. Great fun!"

In this way, before long, the over-indulged and the self-important would be humbled into submission and made to concentrate a bit more on what they're supposed to be doing - entertaining people.