For obvious reasons, Excel is my favourite Office application, and fiddling around with it helps me to pass the time. My timesheet spreadsheet is carefully honed to track the hours, days, and weeks at work, with holidays brightly marked by dayglo cells. It's one of the few things that keeps me sane.

Just when I was dropping to sleep, two people suddenly appeared by my desk, in a manner not unlike that of the shopkeeper in Mr Benn (but without the fez). They wanted me to amend a solitary byte in an insurance policy. So that was my main source of excitement for the day, apart from a vending machine giving me two bars of chocolate for the price of one...

I received an email to tell me about this year's plan to make a mockery of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award. It's possible to vote by email, so the plan is for everybody to vote for David Beckham. I doubt it'll work - a couple of years ago a similar scam made the sports pages of the Daily Express:

Gay star tops poll as jokers rig votes

Exclusive

By Jason Solomons

JUSTIN FASHANU is leading the race to win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award after a mischievous campaign by Internet users to wreck the voting system.

BBC executives face the huge embarrassment of having the former Norwich footballer-turned-gay icon carry off the prestigious prize.

Fashanu's name had been suggested by a group of cheeky 'netties' when the BBC opened up voting to e-mail for the first time.

Cyberspace surfers soon realised the show's web site could be easily flooded with junk votes.

Fashanu, who shook football with his gay confessions and now splits his time between New Zealand and Los Angeles, is thousands of votes ahead of genuine candidates such as Damon Hill and Steve Redgrave.

Producer Dave Gordon has ordered all Fashanu votes to be discounted - as the BBC did with angler Bob Nudd two years ago after a campaign by fishermen - but the move calls into question the integrity of the showpiece

The Express, 29 November 1996