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Anorak | Trying To Be Funny

Trying To Be Funny

by | 18th, June 2006

ON Monday the Mirror told us that Heather Mills McCartney, aka Lady Mucca, had spent an hour talking to her estranged husband, Paul McCartney, on the telephone. They had discussed allegations that, before they met and married, she had been paid thousands of pounds to sleep with rich Arabs.

We could have worked out how much an hour of Heather’s time was worth, but to have done so would have been crass, insensitive and wrong. Heather told Paul there is no truth in the claims that she has had sex for money.

Of course the matter will not end there. This is a story with more juice than Del Monte.

And while we waited for the next instalment, Germany was getting ready to launch an attack that would take more than inflatable Spitfires to see off.

On Tuesday we read that German newspaper Bild, what the Star perhaps enviously called a “downmarket” tabloid, had attacked David Beckham…and his family.

BLITZKRIEG! Multi-talented Victoria Beckham was described as “a trophy wife”.

DOODLEBUG! Brooklyn and Romeo were called zwerge (dwarves) and Posh was accused of dressing her youngest son as a girl.

LEBENSRAUM! Victoria’s sister-in-law Joanne was “chubby”. “Arms, bust, bum, all very British,” it said. “Joanne is the sort of girl who drinks sangria on the beach in Majorca. And then dances on a table with her top off.”

MEIN KAMPF! Victoria’s mother-in-law had a peasant smile, was an ex-hairdresser and – vilest of vile slurs – “is a Robbie Williams fan”.

On Wednesday, David was ready to fight fire with water. “I don’t want to give these people more publicity then they’ve already had,” said Day-vid, “I’m not accepting it but you have to realise there are some people out there who are a little bit sad.”

As counterattacks go, that was right up there with team England’s best efforts to date.

But not to worry, it was all a misunderstanding. The true meaning had been lost in translation.

“It was meant to be funny and should not have been taken so seriously,” said Herr Tobias Holtkamp, the German journalist behind the assault.

“In German,” said he, “speck was used as a play on words which means that you have a big stomach and you are overweight. I did not mean to say she [Joanne Beckham] looked like a pig.”

It’s just an example of what can happen when you start trying to be funny. Germans will surely think twice before having another go at making a joke.

Back in Blighty, Thursday brought news of Kate Moss. The Mirror’s dire 3AM Girls told us that while dressed in a pair of “sexy beige” shorts and other clothes (details available on request), Moss had visited a cafe and ordered a “large white roll with tuna, mayonnaise and sweetcorn and a full-fat Coke”.

You half expected the headline to scream “Moss Does Coke”, and shame on the Mirror for missing this opportunity to shock.

But, of course, Moss does not take cocaine. She may never have taken the stuff. As the Sun said, those infamous shots of Moss in a London recording studio were not proof of her dalliance with the narcotic.

On Friday we read that it was official – Moss was free to go.

Looking at the pictures of Moss chopping lines of cocaine/talcum powder/anthrax in a London recording studio, the Mail heard Rene Barclays, the top lawyer at the Crown Prosecution Service, say there was an “absolutely clear indication” Kate was taking drugs and providing them to others.

But: “However in the absence of any forensic evidence, or direct eye-witness evidence about the substance in question, its precise nature could not be established.”

So that was that. Photographs can be inconclusive. Moss might not have taken cocaine – just as Heather Mills might not have showed a curly-haired man an intimate use for baby oil.



Posted: 18th, June 2006 | In: Broadsheets Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink