Sociologists across Britain are hailing a breakthrough in human behaviour last Sunday morning as a 37-year-old woman from Buckinghamshire sat through Steve Wright's Sunday Love Songs on Radio 2 without intending it as a silent reproach to her partner. Jessica Rowley, a marketing manager in a High Wycombe multimedia firm, told reporters that she and her boyfriend Gary Dawson simply started listening at random.
'I quite liked the music so I carried on listening - maybe I'm showing my age,' Rowley told reporters. 'All that slush from these couples who have been blissfully happy for 25 years and feel to compelled to tell the country all about it was a bit nauseating, but I was busy waxing the table and I couldn't be bothered to change channels.'
According to Professor Roy Wilde, author of 'You Never Say That to Me: Why Women Fall for Romantic Drivel', about 70% of women listen to Sunday Love Songs and shows like it to convince their husbands that they ought to worship the dust under their feet, while the other 30% are fantasising about the ex they should have stayed with. Rowley, however, says that neither of these things applies to her.
'Gary is a fairly average sort of bloke but then I'm a fairly average woman, so we're pretty well suited all in all,' she said. 'Look, if you promise not to laugh at me - when I was younger, I thought Steve Wright was hilarious. Do you remember Mr Angry? He always used to get so angry he'd THROW the phone down ... oh look, you did say you wouldn't laugh.'
After the end of the show, the couple went out to lunch in a local pub, during which Rowley did not glare Dawson's head, mutter anything about not being appreciated or ask repeatedly why he hadn't told her she was the most precious thing in the whole wide world. Professor Wilde welcomed this development but cautioned against it being seen as a new trend.
'Listening to loved-up saps and their puke-inducing radio dedications is an essential safety valve for some people,' he said, glancing nervously at his wife. 'But best leave them to it - it might be dangerous to point out that most of the men are doing it because of guilt over their last affair or because they are hoping to finally get some anal. No, dear, not me, obviously...'