Are you aware of The Aristocrats? In case you're not, it's basically a joke told by comedians to one another to demonstrate their skill at their craft, each one putting their own stamp on it when telling it. There was even a documentary about it – here's the trailer.
A similar thing appears to be occurring over on Amazon.co.uk with the Paul Ross canvas print. For those who don't know, Paul Ross is a UK TV presenter who's worked on shows including The Big Breakfast and Most Haunted Live!. He's also the brother of Jonathan Ross.
So what more natural thing could there be than to buy a canvas print of him that you could stick on your wall, hey?
Okay, quite a lot, but soon it becomes clear that this might not be an entirely legitimate product and that someone is taking the piss. For starters, the starting price is £2,500 for a new one, £6,495.99 for a used one.
But all the same, possible, you might think, particularly since the "Technical Details" section seems fine:
This 20 Canvas Print features an image chosen by Mirror Photos. Estimated image size 508x333mm.
White Sides Ready to hang, 51cm along the longest edge (other side scaled to fit). High quality 300gsm canvas with Fujifilm water based pigment ink. Hand stretched and stapled to 30mm wood frame, bevelled to increase tightness. Back finished with artists tape
Image Description: Paul Ross - TV Presenter August 2001 Paul Ross on the set of his new Daytime TV Quiz - No Win No Fee - for the BBC cMirrorpix
For any queries regarding this item please contact Mirror Photos ℅ Media Storehouse quoting Media Reference 1068796
© MirrorPrintStore 2008 - All Rights Reserved
Where it starts to get interesting is "Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed"
Still, could be possible. Who knows what Paul Ross fans are like, huh?
But then we get to the Customer Reviews. It would seem more or less everyone who fancies themselves as comedians as come to this item and attempted to come up with the funniest reviews possible. So far, there are 491 of them. Some of them are works of genius:
How about this from I Aisthorpe?
Yesterday I was a bed ridden, drug addled alcoholic with no hope, no future.
Then I bought this.
Now I'm a bed ridden, drug addled alcoholic with no hope, no future, but with a 20" Canvas of Paul Ross.
You just never know what lies around the corner.
Or David W Galbraith's?
I used to be a very successful insurance salesman at AIG. I had riches beyond belief: Faberge Eggs; Brut Aftershave, also by Faberge; a diamond encrusted Rolex; lime green Lamborghini; monogrammed slippers; a piano shaped toilet that once belonged to Liberace and a 16 ft pyramid of Ferrero Rocher chocolates. Some friends at the country club let me in on this secret that all the old money had canvas printed photos of Paul Ross, so I bought one at auction.
There was something wonderful and majestic about it, some people say the enigmatic smile is a knowing reference to his Merovingian ancestry. It hung for 3 years above the alabaster fireplace in my drawing room, replacing Munch's Scream, which I borrowed from a friend who was also in the insurance business.
But over time there was something unsettling about the picture. At first it sounded like it emitted a high pitched, almost imperceptible, tone, like an old TV set. Then it started whispering things to me. After a while it started telling jokes and then giving me stock tips. Eventually it recommended I invest all my money with a guy called Bernie Madoff.
Now I have nothing, I get high by sucking anti-freeze from car windscreen washers, and even had to take public transport. My only possession is this picture of Paul Ross. It is my love, my life. He completes me.
Or how about Jan van der Valk's?
Impervious, isolated, majestic. Paul Ross sits there on my 20 inch box canvas paint with his glass of water, brooding, evocative of Hephaestus, the Greek god of aluminium B&Q garden furniture.
Paul, I salute thee.
Go and have a look at the reviews and let us know what your favourite one is – perhaps you could even write one yourself.