Politicians looking to improve their chances of getting elected look for spouses with a surname towards the beginning of the phone book. That will allow them to attach their political chances to the buoy of a name like Abela, Agius or Apap.

Candidates are listed alphabetically on the ballot sheet which means that for voters who are largely indifferent about which MP gets elected once they’ve chosen their political party, candidates with surnames starting with A or B do better than candidates with surnames starting with X or Z.

Since some voters, to spice up their lives, vote in reverse alphabetical order the Zs are less unlucky than the languishing Gs and Fs in the middle of the ballot sheet.

Here’s Labour candidate Malcolm Paul Galea. He has now rebranded to Malcolm Paul Agius Galea. It’s like getting a doctorate. But one that matters.

For such is the mediocrity of politics in this country.