Is it bad that I originally read that as five hundred peasants and wasn’t overly surprised? Of course it has nothing to do with my own intentions, clearly it’s rather more about my opinion of the current government and what lengths they will go to in order to incite the electorate to cast their votes for them come May. What red blooded right winger wouldn’t get that little bit incredibly excited about the opportunity to go on a killing spree of the undeserving poor and then get down to the nitty gritty of the marvellous world of home ownership? Perhaps I’m being a little unfair to those who don’t share my exact political views. We’ll never know.
For better or for worse, the killing spree in this case is strictly ornithological. The unbridled excitement of an adventure day where you can get your hands just that tiny bit dirty is being offered and there’s the added lustre of an incredibly shiny prize at the end of it should you reach your hunting goal. Essentially, everyone’s going to get a specially modified weapon (they’re not guns are they in this sort of situation are they? No doubt it’ll be assault muskets or something thrillingly antique yet updated for the modern world of shooter games) where the bullet have little flags that pop out the end so that the kill can be readily identified as yours.
At the end of proceedings, the birds will be counted up (it’s fine to count your not chickens once you’re not remotely bothered about anything hatching) and anyone who’s managed to massacre precisely five hundred (if you’ve gone over then you’ll be rightly penalised for a surfeit of enthusiasm) pheasants will be allowed to have a go at the lucky dip. Whatever house comes out, they’ll be offered a cut price mortgage on it. However, some people might find themselves facing a hell of a commute. Nobody said anything about the house being in the same corner of the country as them.