As in the place – a wee dwelling in Perthshire with the fetching and enchanting town name of Dull. I’m sure it draws in the tourists. Yes, my day slaving for Bastardstone’s was lightened (never an easy task on a Monday) by one of the avalanche of humour books that appear before Xmas, Far From and Other Places by Dominic Greyer (Sort of Books, £8.99, ISBN: 095422177X). This one stood out from the other so-called humorous titles which vie for their chance to end up in some (very disappointed) person’s Xmas stocking in that it was genuinely funny (quite remarkable for one of these seasonal releases, believe me). Basically the author has had great fun in chasing down some of the great many villages and towns in our kingdom which have damned silly names and adding in photographs of the road signs. Cuckoo’s Knob was one of my favourites (if you don’t belive me then check out this search for local eateries!)and I was delighted to see that there was actually a place called Land of Nod in Britain. In a world which takes itself to seriously – which leads to all sorts of tragedies – it is comforting to know that our British eccentricities extend also to the very geography of our land. Perhaps it’s something in the water? Actually, it must be in other waters too, as this discussion on Next Exit illustrates. And i-r-genius has a handy compilation of worldwide silly or rude placenames, including Dildo in Newfoundland and the lovely Twatt in the Orkney Isles.

I also spotted in amongst the (too) many small gimmick titles a tiny hardback from the folk behind the Onion (complete with miniature onion bookmark). I was left wondering if this meant this edition was properly a Shallot?