Normally I switch off mentally when the ads come on, but last night, in the middle of the News, something nudged me in the ribs and told me to pay attention because I might just learn something. So I did. I'd just spent a quarter of an hour being told about tumbling markets and rising unemployment and how we were all getting poorer and then, bingo, suddenly here were all these happy, smooth-faced women trying to sell me frivolities. It was like falling into another world- a vanished world- where we all still had-or thought we had- money to burn. One ad was for a lotion which comes packaged like a roll-on deodorant- and you smear it under your eyes to make them sparkle (so, basically, snake-oil) - and the next was for an automatic air freshener that squirts not one, not two, but three different fragrances into your home. Who needs this trash? Who ever needed it? And what a heedlessly rich society we must have been- up until last week- to be even tempted by it!