With the Wimbledon Tennis Championships over for another year, National Rail chiefs are looking to snap up the services of the tournament’s foot fault judges, who are now out of work until next summer.
“We currently have a shortage of staff who specialise in shouting at people who step over the yellow lines on platforms,” National Rail recruitment officer Brian Brainwave said. “But while I was watching the tennis a couple of weeks ago, I noticed that there were people standing around for hours, not doing much of anything except shouting whenever someone stepped over a line. These people would be perfect for our organisation.”
However, it turns out that not many of the line judges are keen on the idea. “It’d be nice to have a year-round income,” line judge Tamara Tiebreak said. “But I think I’d get bored, considering the low stakes of railway work. Missing a foot fault at a crucial moment can alter the result of a match or even an entire tournament, so that helps to keep me alert. Whereas if I don’t notice someone standing two feet from the platform edge rather than the designated twenty-seven inches, all that changes is that somebody who is perfectly aware of their surroundings and in no danger whatsoever doesn’t get yelled at.”
Irate members of the public were also opposed to the scheme. “There’s too many people doing this job already,” said one commuter whose train from Clapham Junction had just been cancelled. “If there weren’t so many of these clowns clogging up the platform, we wouldn’t have to step over the line to get past in the first place.”