Winston Smith was trapped in the chair. He was strapped in tightly and could not move. Big Brother's voice sounded through the microphone on the wall.
"Now, scum. Tell us all you know!"
"No..." Winston said. "Never!"
"This is Room 101. Your deepest fears will be enacted if you do not comply. Your darkest terrors that give you nightmares will come true. Do you still resist?"
Winston was scared but he gritted his teeth.
"Nothing you could do would make me talk!"
"If that's the way you want it." said Big Brother angrily. "But let me warn you. This will be worse than the rats..."
Winston started to sweat with fear. Surely nothing could be worse than that? Big Brother continued.
"Worse than eating sprouts... and Marmite... together!"
Winston couldn't believe it. It was impossible!
"I won't talk!" He said. "I won't!"
There was a deathly silence.
"Have it your own way." Big Brother spat viciously. The microphone clicked off. Winston waited. Then... it happened. The music started.
"Nooooooooooo!" He screamed. "Anything but the panpipes!!!!"
It was a nightmare. Each carefully crafted tune lasted for about 15 minutes and was calculated to cause as much brain-numbing as possible. As the 40 track CD came to an end, it was played again... and again. after the second time Winston was in agony. After the fifth time he was foaming at the mouth...
Five days later Winston's brain had shrunk to the size of a pea.
"Ggggnnnnaaaahhhhhhhh....." he groaned, as the panpipe version of Abba's 'Fernando' began for the 73rd time. "No more... no I can't stand it! I'll do anything! Anything! Just stop this torture! I'll tell you everything! Please... please!"
Big Brother smiled.
The above passage was inspired by a coach journey to France. Panpipe music was played over the speakers constantly and drove me and my family barking mad (some people would say we were already but that's irrelevant). We endured listening to such classics as panpipe versions of Madonna's 'La Isla Bontia', Abba's 'Fernando', and 'The Power of Love'. Argh! Horrible. At least now I know I can survive anything.
Inspired by this experience me and my brother kept ourselves sane by thinking what would be on the Greatest Panpipe album ever. On the next page are the results... If you dare to read them...