So Swizzels, the candy company that has been making Love Hearts for five decades, has brought out a new line of sweets.
Where Love Hearts bear cutesy-wutesy messages to make you feel good, Whatevers will bear new-fangled words like "Chav" and "Minger". In other words, insults. Not just any insults, but particularly ugly ones that reflect a new wave of snobbery and prejudice in the UK.
Maybe we could add "Paki" and "fag" to the line-up? Oh, the fun children could have swapping those in the playground with their friends.
If forgiveness isn't back in vogue, at least it has been in the public eye a lot recently.
Gee Walker, mother of teenager Anthony Walker, who was murdered last summer not two or three miles from me, wore her Christian faith on her sleeve in the aftermath of her son's racist killing. She said she felt no bitterness towards his murderers, but forgave them - and the media praised her for it.
Jill Saward, the vicar's daughter raped in the most unimaginably brutal way twenty years ago, again reaffirmed her forgiveness towards her attackers this week.
Of course, not everyone can bring themselves to forgive - and I can't blame them. Forgiveness is an ideal, but not always a realistic one in a complex world. A vicar whose daughter was killed in last year's London bombings resigned this week because she could not forgive the terrorists.
Most interesting, in my opinion, has been the recent storyline in Coronation Street. I confess, in the last six months I have become utterly addicted to this show, which is still the one of the finest dramas on British television after forty-some years. In the latest plot turn, Emily Bishop - generally a tremendously dull character who hasn't had a good storyline to herself in eons - comes face-to-face with the now-genuinely repentant killer of her late husband, and sinks into a deep depression trying to reconcile her feelings of hatred with her devout Christian faith.
On last night's episode she forgave. I suppose some might find her turn-around hard to accept, even grossly unrealistic. All the same, I think Corrie was bold to tackle repentance and forgiveness head-on with this storyline, especially since the ambiguities of the situation defied easy answers.
Even the soap operas seem to be getting in with the forgiveness trend.
I've just realized the common thread linking these stories is that they are all about women. What's with that?
So I had to sit through half an hour of the worst comedian ever yesterday afternoon. 'The company' paid an extortionate amount per head for a charity Christmas dinner, and on comes this guy worthy of the seventies TV show The Comedians (left). He should have had one of those pink shirts with the frills down the front.
I don't mind 'offensive' comedy, per se, since offence can be good, and comedy is a great vehicle for it. But this guy just had tired old jokes I had heard before, and he kept apologizing for being "politically incorrect", and prefaced every joke with "I'm not being sexist, but..." and "I'm not being racist, but...". Truth is, he wasn't so much offensive as embarrassingly boring. To paraphrase Shirley Valentine, it was a good job we weren't having soup, or I'd have put me head in it and drowned meself.