A reader writes: "Is the end of the world coming? Has the polarity of the earth shifted? Yes, it is happening - I have proof. For 30-plus years I have eaten my Marmite on toast, until the shortage. I hunkered down, located as much of the product as I could and prepared to weather the storm. I eventually ran out, held out for as long as I could, and then finally swallowed my pride, followed by some Vegemite. Then, the other day my son asked for some Marmite toast soldiers for dipping in his boiled eggs. I gave him Vegemite. 'This is not Marmite,' he grumbled. 'Same thing', I said without thinking. There, it's happened. I have been converted. Sanitarium, it's too late, the world has turned upside down."

Burden of junk mail
Stewart Lind reckons, in the seven days from Sunday, December 9, he received 1.63kg of unsolicited "junk" mail at his Auckland address. "If all of Auckland's 450,000-plus homes received this, that would amount to over 700 tonnes of useless junk mail in a single week."

Putting it right
This correction appeared in The Atlantic newspaper: "This post originally referred to Jennifer Grey as 'Ferris Bueller's sister'. As commenters have pointed out, her role alongside Swayze in Dirty Dancing is clearly the more relevant. We regret putting Baby in a corner."

Beware the paperclips
In England, the Manchester NHS Trust has banned paperclips because staff keep cutting themselves. The trust sent a memo telling employees that any paperclips should be carefully disposed of and replaced with plastic fasteners.


Free trees for battlers
Good Corporate Citizen: Andersen Accountants in Auckland are giving away Christmas trees. The trees are potted living Christmas trees. Spokeswoman Kristina Andersen says that, "The firm wants to reach out to those who have had a hard year and those who have made a real difference." If you would like to nominate any deserving recipients in the Auckland area please contact the company on tree@andersen.co.nz and include your contact details, the contact details of the person you are nominating and the reasons for nominating that person.

Glasses lost at Long Bay
Aphrodite writes: "My son lost his everyday much needed Converse brand prescription glasses at Long Bay Beach in the water while the tide was coming in, on his class trip on Thursday. He is so disappointed and if by chance anyone finds them please contact Sideswipe."

Mexico's Covergirl: Someone re-imagines Frida Kahlo as a 'pretty'. It's probably a satire as anyone who knew of her, would not be a dumb as to do this seriously. Here's what the alleged artists says of his/her tranformational picture. "Frida Kahlo: Not too easy on the eyes. I mean she's got the lady-mo and the monobrow thing going on. She didn't know where to put her blush or what shade lipstick would obviously suit her skin tone. Really, she's a bit of a wreck. So this got me to thinking. What would have happened if her girlfriends had done the right thing and taken her to a beautician, (which clearly needed to happen)? I did a subtle re-paint over the top of her original self-portrait to "conceptualize" what it would have looked like if she had been whisked off to Beauty Works or the likes....I didn't want to alter the integrity of the original painting too much. What do you reckon?"

Picture this #1: Chemis-tree. (geddit?)

Picture this #2: "The council recently refurbished this bus shelter [in Wellington on the cnr of Ohiro Road at Tanera Crescent] and had to take away the benches to do it. So it was refurbished and then the benches just... never came back. So someone has now 'fixed' this problem". With a couch, a warehouse stationery shelving unit , a hottie and a lamp. Nice one. For updates [I think there's now a painting on the wall] go to Story_Time on Reddit.
Video: The largest iceberg break-up ever seen -- that 7.4 cubic kilometres of ice separating from Greenland's Illulissat glacier 'yall!

Got a Sideswipe? Send your pictures, links and anecdotes to Ana at ana.samways@nzherald.co.nz