Anorak

Tabloids | Anorak - Part 251

Tabloids Category

The news as told by the UK’s tabloid press – The Sun, Daily Express, Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, Daily Star and News of the World.

Too Many Props

‘RUGBY players have an enviable reputation for sobriety, for treating women with respect and for not drinking bottles of after-shave through a jock-strap.

Caught…in the Mirror

It is therefore with great dismay that we learn how two teenaged rugby players have been kicked out of their public school for secretly filming a sex session.

The Mirror says James Haskell, the England under-18 rugby captain, and Paul Doran-Jones set up a video camera in a boys’ dormitory and recorded Paul’s romp with his girlfriend without her knowledge.

They then played it to other pupils at Wellington College, one of whom tells the paper that it was ”full-on stuff”.

”The younger boys were banned from seeing it,” he says. ”It’s fair to say it was obviously not the first time for either Paul or his girlfriend.”

”Paul’s girlfriend had no idea, but found out – she was upset at first, then furious. She stormed round and grabbed the film and, as far as we know, has destroyed it.”

However, news of the video leaked out to staff and the two boys and the girl were hauled in front of the headmaster, where all of them were kicked out.

Doran-Jones and his 17-year-old girlfriend have been banned for having sex on the school premises; Haskell has been banned for being stupid enough to include himself in the film.

They will, however, be allowed to return to take their A-levels – although Haskell has already been given a C for his film studies coursework.

Posted: 28th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


What A Swell Guy!

‘THESE two teenaged miscreants will no doubt feel that they have not only let down the rugby-playing fraternity, but the reputation of public schools as well.

Princes will be princes

Hitherto, these bastions of learning have been famous the world over for turning out well-rounded, studious young men with at least one hyphen to their name.

People like Guy Pelly, the 21-year-old who was widely credited with introducing his best friend, Prince Harry, to drink and drugs.

But Prince Charles is not so keen on the young Pelly, according to the Sun. And he has phoned his youngest son and told him to stop seeing him.

Pelly’s latest jape was to strip off after an all-day drinking binge at a charity polo match, climb on top of the VIP marquee and slide off.

If the alternative was to sit and watch toffs charging round and trying to play hockey on horseback, it seems a perfectly fair way to behave to us.

Indeed, in the olden says, young Pelly would probably have been made captain of the school first XV for that.

But Charles was unamused. ”Pelly’s behaviour was unacceptable for someone who associates with the prince,” said a royal aide.

”Charles understands Harry had nothing to do with what went on, but Pelly is his friend. He shouldn’t be in his circle any more.”

Pelly’s dad John, however, took a different view. ”It was harmless fun,” he said. ”Boys will be boys.”

Indeed they will – and public school boys will be more than most.

Posted: 28th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


World Goes Barker Mad

‘WHEN the rescue plane landed at the North Pole to pick up polar explorer Pen Hadow, the only surprise was that Linda Barker wasn’t there as well.

Linda reveals how to perform a jungle enema

After all, the Changing Rooms presenter has managed to get everywhere else since emerging from the Australian jungle to a world who finally knew who she was.

This morning, ”I’m A Celebrity’s jungle queen” is in the Express, explaining to readers ”how she manages to look fabulous at 41 and how she kept up the glamour even when marooned in the rainforest”.

Marooned? On a film set with plastic crocodiles, fake plants and polystyrene rocks – pleeease!

Tomorrow, in the second part of this ”brilliant” four-part series, Linda gives us her recipe for healthy eating.

On Friday, we learn how Linda keeps her sex life with hubby Chris fresh and exciting – and on Saturday we get to see how she wipes her bum.

Posted: 28th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Boob-oushka!

‘THE family of Big Brother housemate Anoushka Golebiewski have apparently employed a celebrity fixer to cash in on her fame.

Anoushka prepares to do her strangled cat impression

Agent Amanda Stocks tells the Express: ”My role is to represent the family and put any offers from the media to them. All inquiries or bids from the media should go through me.

”At the moment, Anoushka hasn’t had any offers, but that may well change. She is obviously enjoying the limelight.”

Indeed she is, stripping off in front of some of her fellow housemates as she went for a bath yesterday – which is enough to fulfil her lifelong dream…of seeing her boobs in the Star.

And the 20-year-old nursery assistant immediately set Amanda Stocks’ phone ringing by admitting that she would happily pose topless if the shots were flattering.

”If it was classy, it wouldn’t be too bad,” she said (which is no doubt why she chose the Star as her paper of choice). ”But I wouldn’t get my arse out or do full frontal.”

As Anoushka was complaining to fellow inmate Tania that her boobs were saggy, former boyfriend Ade Worthy was telling the Sun what a great body – and great vocal chords – she had.

”She was great,” the 20-year-old bodybuilder says. ”She had a great body on her and she really used to squeal. She sounded like a strangled cat.

”She couldn’t get enough and screamed the place down.”

Phil Cooper, landlord of Ye Olde Starre Inne in Christchurch, Dorset said that Anoushka was completely the opposite to how she was on the show.

”She hardly said a thing when she came in to see Ade,” he tells the Sun. ”I think she’s after a little bit of stardom.”

Surely not. But what is 22-year-old Tania, who once dated Peter Andre and West Ham striker Youssef Sofiane, doing in the house?

That is the question that the French footballer is asking himself.

”She’s been out with a singer and a footballer – I don’t think she’s using the show as a springboard to a celebrity career.”

No, Youssef. We very much doubt she is either…

Posted: 27th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Posher Than Posh

‘TOFF totty Tara Palmer Tomkinson is posher than Posh Spice, says the Star – and to prove it she has just replaced Victoria Beckham in the Walker Crisps telly ads.

A jungle of laughs

It’s hard to know where to start with this story, so we’ll just tell you that ”the brunette beauty is the first female star to land her own crisp commercial”.

Walkers bosses have lined the 31-year-old It girl (or IT girl, as the Star calls her) to promote their Oriental Crackers range.

”I’ve always longed to appear in a Walkers TV ad,” the former I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! contestant tells the Star, as she desperately tries to keep a straight face.

”Tara will be a jungle of laughs,” Walkers marketing boss Jon Goldstone responds.

Truly, you couldn’t make this stuff up.

Posted: 27th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Baby, We Don’t Care

‘TARA Palmer Tomkinson has proved herself posh by appearing in a Walkers crisps ad.

The world’s second worst dressed woman

The Mirror has confirmed it is now a serious paper by today’s revelation that not one, but two, England footballers read it. Or, at least, look at the pictures.

The paper shows Wayne Rooney and girlfriend Colleen McLoughlin sunbathing in Spain and looking at pictures of themselves in yesterday’s paper.

”England teammate Steven Gerrard, 22, and his partner had earlier grabbed their own copy of the Mirror,” it says.

If Gerrard gets a copy of today’s Mirror, he will see his ex-girlfriend, Brookside babe Jennifer Ellison, doing a Britney impression.

”Wearing a skin-tight gold PVC outfit, the 20-year-old starlet looked the spitting image of Britney Spears,” the paper says, as she performed her first live gig in Liverpool.

Meanwhile, Britney has shed her blonde locks and is, in the view of the paper, ”going through some sort of fashion crisis”.

Given that this is the person who has been named worst-dressed woman in the world for the past three years, you can only imagine how bad it is.

So, finally to Girls Aloud blonde Sarah Harding, who has apparently been told to ditch her boyfriend, Mikey Green from Popstars rejects band Phixx, because he’s not famous enough.

”Sarah is incredibly sexy and one of the most instantly recognisable singers in the band,” an insider tells the Mirror.

One of the most instantly recognisable singers in the band – high praise indeed!

Posted: 27th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Writing Wrongs

‘IN a land with no shortage of prancing, vain fools (see FOUR series of Big Brother), it seems odd that Prince Philip is still seen as ”rude”.

”Look at those blithering idiots!” ”Just ignore the children, dear”

That’s what the Sun says he is, so it must be true. And the evidence can be found when he turned up to meet and greet locals at Sheffield’s Fir View school.

”Were you here in the bad old days?” asked the Prince of a gaggle of parents. The women nodded. ”That’s why you can’t read and write then!” he replied.

To the Sun this means that the Prince is ”write rude”. And that he ”says mums are dunces”.

Although, all the school’s headmaster, Hugh Howe, can say is that ”the royal visit has left staff and pupils with some wonderful memories”.

Which only time and the lack of a pen prevents them from putting down on paper…

Posted: 23rd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Public House

‘TODAY the papers celebrate the catchphrase that twelve new contestants are hoping will propel them to international stardom, or a 10 per cent discount at their local kebab van: ”I’m mad, me!”

”I can do you a good deal on me kebab”

Yes, Big Brother is back for a fourth series, and the papers are falling over themselves to talk it up.

The key word is ”sex” and the Sun says that to help pop the show’s cherry a bar has been installed in the house, done up like a ”traditional East End boozer”.

It’s not known whether or not the said pub includes a small yellow-haired old man droning about the war, an ageing skinhead kicking a fruit machine or ”Karaoke” Kate – ”I luv singin”’. Just that it will be there.

But will it encourage two or more of the Big Brother contestants to ”get it on”? An insider who knows about these things tells the Star that he thinks not.

In a front-page article on how the contestants have been allowed to stay with their lovers on the night before the show begins, the informer says: ”After all, if they last until the end of the show they face nine weeks without sex.”

To which comment, the kind of people who sit avidly glued to their TV sets for the show’s full run can only ask, ”Is that all?”

Posted: 23rd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Stasi And Hutch

‘IN today’s story of the world gone mad we turn to the Mail and the tale of Peter the lop-eared bunny, who was given a ticket for parking in a restricted zone.

Peter was happy not to have been breathalised

The story goes that when Peter’s pet-shop-owning pal Cliff Chamberlain saw a traffic warden closing in on his van he moved the vehicle and left Peter behind in his hutch.

Whether Pete was keeping the space open or minding his own business was neither here nor there, and the uniformed drone slapped a £30 penalty notice on Pete’s vehicle.

Speaking in the Express, Mr Chamberlain of Eccles Pet Store, Salford, can’t believe what has happened.

”The rabbit’s not for sale now – he’s done nothing wrong,” he says. ”He can’t drive and the hutch hasn’t even got any wheels.”

It sounds like Peter can expect an imminent visit from the law – after all, no road tax, no licence and no MOT are criminal offences.

Posted: 23rd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Waxing Lyrical

‘DID you know that the amount of wax used to make a replica of Jennifer Lopez’s backside could heat a small Guatemalan village for an entire year?

The Ben Affleck waxwork went a bit wrong

It’s the kind of fact any self-respecting journalist should equip themself with. But for the Express’ David Smith, the Star’s Jon Lockett and Sun’s Thomas Whitaker, research extends only as far as their groping reach.

Each of the three men have paid visits to Madame Tussaud’s and made a beeline for a new waxwork of the Latina singer Jennifer Lopez.

We are not told which writer got there first, but the scramble to feel up a dummy must have been a sight to behold.

But let us begin with Mr Smith of the Express, who was on ”the verge of melting” when he sidled up to the glorified tailor’s manikin.

He even caused her cheeks to colour, by grabbing hold of her backside in the manner of a pubescent boy at a school disco and whispering something into her waxy-coated ear.

A microphone hidden inside J-Lo’s head picks up the mutterings and triggers light-emitting diodes in her cheeks. No matter what is said, the woman who would be Mrs Ben Affleck blushes.

The Star’s Mr Lockett cares not for diodes and gizmos, preferring to close his eyes and dream of what a real woman must feel like as he gets close.

But it’s the Sun’s Mr Whitaker who really does us proud, grabbing the chanteuse’s arse with both hands and then performing the same trick on a waxwork effigy of Geri Halliwell.

His verdict? ”I also tested Geri’s bum – but it was bit hard for my liking.”

But not to worry because Whitaker and the rest of the professionals can always melt a few household candles and get to work forming their ideal woman.

They can begin just as soon as they find a suitable wick…

Posted: 22nd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Angel Falls

‘IF being famous can be measured in terms of unpopularity, then Charlotte Church is a true-born star.

Charlotte’s ready for blows

It’s not the papers who no longer love the singer but the people of her native Cardiff who, according to the Sun, are just queuing up to punch her lights out.

And the shock is that it’s not her wealth and fame that’s attracting unwanted attention, but the fact that she dates Steven Johnson, a man whom loved-up Charlotte thinks every girl wants to be with.

”People come up to me and be horrible”, says Charlotte. ”Girls want to fight me all the time, especially after I started going out with Steven.”

She goes on: ”They say to me ‘What you doin’ comin’ down into our part of town, takin’ our men, you stupid cow. Come on, let’s go for blows’.”

Happily, the trauma of ”goin’ for blows” over ”gorgeous” Steven – her first love – will soon be over.

As the Star says, Charlotte will get access to her millions in February next year when she turns 18.

At which precise moment we expect her to buy a home for her and Steven to live happily ever after in.

Which is about as likely as Steven not trying to sell the story of their love – again.

Posted: 22nd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Cash For Access

‘SINCE the state owns No.10 Downing Street, we wonder how long it will be until Tony Blair and his brood have the right to buy?

Family house, central London, easy walking distance from work…

And with them living above No.11, could they buy both the houses and knock the two together, creating enough space for them and their brood to live in together for years to come, in the manner of the Waltons?

As it is, the Mirror reports that Cherie has been auctioning off tours of what, perhaps, will one day be her private home.

At a fundraising evening for 17-year-old son Nicky’s exclusive London Oratory school, held at the down-at-heel Sheraton Hotel, Park Lane, London, Cherie offered a tour of No.10 as the first prize in a raffle.

The lucky winner was ”multi-millionaire” computer recruitment consultant Bill Bottriell, who lashed out £1,700 on the chance to tread the Blairs’ rug.

Anyone else who wants to take a look inside, can either send a large cheque to Nicky Blair – or take his dad out for a slap-up meal in Islington’s Granita restaurant.

Posted: 22nd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Beggars Can’t Be Choosers

‘WHAT is the allure of Kat Slater? She looks like David Dickinson in drag. But apparently to Alfie Moon, she’s a living Venus. ”I love her, nanna,” he sobbed to a deranged Grandma Moon. ”I just don’t know what to do.”

Every man’s deepest fear

He could start by sleeping with half of Walford, as it certainly seems to be working for Dennis Watts. Walford’s latest wooden boy, Dennis, is having a revolving door fitted in Sharon’s flat to help him keep up with demand.

At last count, he’d gone through Sam, Joanne and Kat in a day. God only knows what the young women of Albert Square see in this charmless goon, but when the only other single men in the Square are Barry Evans and Ian Beale, it’s clearly a case of beggars can’t be choosers.

Kat has finally wised up to the three-timing cheat though when Dennis calmly presented her with a pair of knickers Sharon had found down the back of her sofa. ”These ain’t mine,” she spat at him. Indeed, any fool knows that Kat never wears them.

It’s clearly only a matter of time before Kat and Alfie get together and with one eye on the ratings, I predict a Christmas wedding.

Martin is back from prison a changed man. He’s changed from a scared schoolboy into a hardened criminal. And who says prison doesn’t work?

He persuaded Vicky to burgle the Mini Mart with him. Although how much out-of-date pork pies fetch on the black market is anyone’s guess.

Gus appointed himself as Walford’s own Nick Ross from Crimewatch and tried to stop the robbery.

But of course just at the moment he arrived at the Mini Mart a police car happened to be passing and Gus got himself arrested, which at least means he’ll get a storyline for a change.

The Square’s other resident buffoon, Barry, is also getting set up for a fall. Janine has managed to worm her way into his business and now into his home.

”I owe everything to Janine,” he told a worried Natalie. Indeed, who could be more qualified to advise people on how to make money from clapped out old bangers with several previous owners than Janine?

Posted: 22nd, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Camera Shy

‘YOU’D think that being married to an Oscar-winning movie star would have cured Michael Douglas of his chronic shyness. But no.

The Douglases had no luck finding their missing baby

It seems Michael, who along with his wife Catherine Zeta Jones famously sued a glossy magazine for publishing photographs which left them feeling ”violated and upset”, is in hiding.

Every time a camera is pushed in his direction Michael holds aloft a card to block the snapper’s view. That the card should have printed on it a photograph of his new child is cruel luck.

As a result the papers are full of the picture of the newest Douglas.

Thus forced to talk about her, Douglas can be heard telling viewers of American TV’s The Tonight Show that ”her name is Carys. It’s a Welsh name which means ‘to love”’.

In the Mail, which also saw the show, Douglas is heard telling the world about Carys’ dimple – ”the famous dimple”, as it is now – and how Dylan, the couple’s other child, is ”two years and nine months” old.

It’s tough to tear ourselves away from such showbiz insight, but moving back to the Sun, we also learn that Catherine has been boxed into a corner by her husband’s desire to be alone.

Only the other day, at a golf match, poor Catherine was forced to tell the hungry press: ”She’s a cutie.”

The Mail reports that the clamour for Carys has gotten worse, and Michael was made to talk about his daughter at the opening of his new movie when he flashed up the infamous card.

And to think it all could have been avoided had Michael and Catherine just been brave enough to talk about themselves for once.

Posted: 21st, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Penny Dreadful

‘IF only the introverted Douglas clan could take a leaf out of the Penny Lancaster book.

”Have you noticed me, yet?”

Rod Stewart’s latest squeeze is appearing everywhere this morning, seen as she is gyrating and prancing about like a…well, like her boyfriend used to.

The Express shows five shots of Penny ”grooving” at a Monte Carlo nightclub.

The Sun ups the ante with six shots of the same, while the Mirror takes its readers though a 10-step photographic casebook into looking like a lap dancer who’s lost her pole.

The Mirror also includes a further shot of the classless evening, showing Rod seated alongside Penny’s father Graham, who at 57 is one year younger than the singer.

The middle-aged duo are seen applauding Penny’s gyrations, which the Mail says lasted 30 minutes, and smiling broadly.

Well, one of them is. Graham looks as pleased as punch at how talented his daughter is, while Rod looks incredulous at best – and fearful at worst.

If only he had a photo to hide behind…

Posted: 21st, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Fat Blue Line

‘REMEMBER the famous police recruitment poster – ”If you can read this, you’re overqualified”?

Police relax height requirement (ACTUAL SIZE)

Well, the Mail say there’s a new recruitment drive on the beat and it’s calling for the short-sighted and unfit to join the soon-to-be portly blue line.

The exam that tests if someone is physically up to the rigours of being a copper is to be made easier.

While 95 per cent of men who take the test pass, only 51 per cent of woman tested make the grade.

And since the police want more women in the force than the current 18 per cent of all officers who are female, the entrance exam is to become easier.

So out goes the ”speed and agility” section, where a wannabe police person runs ”slalom-style” around a series of cones in 27 seconds or less – perhaps wailing ”wee-waa” as they go.

But other modules remain in place, including being able to squeeze a neck-shaped monitor to achieve a ”grip strength” of 32 kilos.

Police will also be expected to perform the vital skill of pushing and pulling a rowing machine.

Anyone caught rowing the machine will be immediately taken outside, upstairs and installed as the new head of CID.

But still there are those against the scheme. People like Shadow Home Secretary Oliver Letwin, who asks: ”Are we to imagine that criminals are going to oblige by becoming less fit as well?”

The simple answer to that is yes.

Posted: 21st, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Tickled Pink

”’MISS!” Yes, little Johnny. ”What’s an exam, miss?”

”The cat BLANK on the mat? Hmm…”

If Charles Clarke, the bat-eared Education Secretary has his way that’s the only kind of questions you’ll hear in our primary schools.

In what the Sun calls a U-turn, the Mail a ”surrender”, and the Mirror an example of how this Government learns from its mistakes, the news is that SATs are to end.

Those Government-set targets that say children should be able to read and write to a prescribed level by the time they’re 11 are to be scrapped.

Instead, all that children of an impressionable age will have to do at school is repeat the phrase ”I love Tony, for he is good” over and over until they sound like they mean it.

Anyone failing to perform this simple, yet effective, task in citizenship will be sat in the specially adapted bus, a picture of which appears in the Mail.

The school bus, which is being piloted on the Isle of Wight, is bright pink and has no heating, despite the windows always being open.

Nicknamed the ”Pink Peril”, the single-decker bus is said to have been highly effective in ”taming” badly behaving nine to 16-year-olds.

Niki Haytack, crime and disorder manager for the Isle of Wight Council, tells us how it works.

”When troublemakers have been given a taste of the pink medicine, they don’t want a second dose,” she says.

”They are known to be embarrassed and to hide their faces on the journey…It is so uncool.”

But, as Charles Clarke has just asked, ”Miss, what’s embarrassed mean?”

Posted: 20th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Shaw Enough

‘SOMEONE else learning a harsh lesson is Tracy Shaw, the woman who has made taking her clothes off a career choice.

Robert’s plans to keep Tracy at home didn’t work

The Star says that the actress has had the marital door slammed in her face by her estranged husband Robert Ashworth.

The story goes that Tracy was ready to sit down and talk about her marriage with Robert. But Robert was having none of it.

After confiding in a close friend (who tells us) how it was over, Robert gave his reasons.

‘I’m the one who’s been here looking after the dog all the time she’s been out and all over the place,’ whines Robert.

This is sad stuff. No, really it is. Because it paves the way for Tracy to talk about her marriage break-up in the weeks to come.

Which at least means Robert will get to see more of her. Problem is, so will the rest of us…

Posted: 20th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Les Be Off

‘AND so the brain drain, that seeping-away of Britain’s brightest talent, goes on – Les Dennis is heading off to live in Spain.

We asked 100 people to go and see a Les Dennis gig…

The Sun says that the ”heartbroken” comic, whose one-man tour has been playing to one man and his knitting, is heading off for a life on the costas with new girlfriend Leoni Cotgrove.

For the man who had it all, this is a sad departure from fame. And, according to a friend of the stricken star, Les is reassuringly bitter about how things have panned out.

The unnamed pal says that Les ”feels he has been let down by the British public who didn’t turn out for his stage show”.

Which gives us an idea. If we ignore those who we don’t like, they will go away. Perhaps they’ll go further than Spain, say to Azerbaijan or Chad.

So on the count of three, all stand up, turn away from the screen and refuse to talk or listen to Vanessa Feltz, Tony Blair, Lenny Henry, Laurence Llewelyn Bowen, Davina McCall…

One, two…

Posted: 20th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


The Braidy Bunch

‘DAVID Beckham’s making the headlines again, or should that be the hairlines.

A Blair hair day

That’s a joke – of sorts – but no-one’s laughing in what was Fleet Street as they’re too busy rubbing their traumatised scalps.

Whereas the Mail opts for the routine job of just picturing the changing locks of the English footballer in a piece entitled ”Hair We Go Again”, the rest send out their work experience drones to get their hair done.

The Mirror hears Victoria call over its appalling 3am Girls to tell them: ”I love his new hairstyle – but, look, David has already burnt his head in the sun!”

But the real news is found beneath that expose of an expose, where ”Mirrorman” Tom gets his hair braided in the Beckham manner.

While Tom takes a first tentative step on the way to becoming the paper’s editor/laughing stock, Neal Kirby steps on the Express’ ladder to the top.

Neal, like Tom, doesn’t get to write a word, and is employed in the mode of a hairdressing model simply to sit down, shut up and then pose for a hideous black-and-white still.

But it’s the Sun that takes the biscuit. Unable to find a willing junior, the paper instead superimposes the braided look on the bonces of Prince William, John Prescott and Tony Blair.

The worry is that if he thought it would make him more popular, Tony might actually adopt the look for real. Well, go for it, Tone, it will…

Posted: 19th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


The Other Ones

‘NOT taking into account the man on the door and the parents who had arrived early to pick up the bored children, the Star’s news that 75 people turned up to watch One True Voice perform must be taken with one eyebrow raised.

So who bought the other CD?

Was it really that many?

The picture that accompanies the story of the band that became television’s Popstars shows the gang of five in the background and 10 teenage girls looking in the general direction of the stage.

Of course, if the girls stand together and bob up and down to the Voices’ unforgettable tune (insert song title here), there could appear to be at least a dozen or even 13 of them.

But this is deviating from the fact that the police-sponsored anti-drugs disco in Larkfield, Kent, was not ready for such talent.

Ahead of its time, the band must wait at least 20 years – at which juncture the boyish men can appear on television in a Where Are They Now? special.

Posted: 19th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Double Zero

‘IF further evidence were needed that we are hurtling down the road to Hell, it comes in the Mirror, where James Bond is seen buying a bong from a head shop in California.

A Bond-ing session

”The name’s Bong, James Bong…and he’s got a Licence to Chill,” says the Mirror, in reference to the man’s catchphrase and the association bongs have with smoking cannabis.

Can it be that Pierce Brosnan, the current man in the Bond tuxedo, likes to accompany his shaken martini with a lung full of noxious puff?

It’s too horrible an image to contemplate. Perhaps the £1,000 bong he bought is for research into next movie – Dr Just Say No.

Posted: 19th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


Passive Voices

‘WE all know that you can’t have a smoke without causing someone at the next table to catch fire, or suffer a slow lingering death.

Katy was keen to try what they were having at the next table

This is, after all, what is says in bald black-and-white print on the back of the typical cigarette packet. The Government says it is so, and since they are never ever wrong, this means it is true.

But now we learn of a 40-year study of 118,000 Californians, and its conclusion that breathing other people’s tobacco smoke has ”no impact” on deaths from lung cancer and heart disease.

The Mail does note that passive smoking has a ”small effect” on the level of respiratory disease, but it is not the serial killer that raises the risk of such illnesses in non-smokers by as much as 25 per cent.

Various husky voices line up to say how the study is flawed, and how habits have changed over the last four decades.

But the study’s appearance in the British Medical Journal will only add gravitas to its findings and produce a broad, if somewhat yellow-toothed smile, on the face of the big tobacco companies.

Posted: 16th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


The Infamous Five

‘HANDS up who wants to be part of the new Europe? Who wants to wear a beret and sip ale from a massive stein, while an oompah band leads us all in a tarantella?

”So I said to Prezza, what do you think of entry into EMU? And he said he thought Rod Hull was dead…”

It’s the kind of question Tony Blair will ask his Cabinet in 24 days time. As the Mail leads, Chancellor Gordon Brown will announce the decision on joining the euro on June 9, after two major Cabinet meetings.

For the papers, this means two things. Firstly, as the Express has it, there is now little likelihood of a public referendum on the euro during this parliament’s lifetime.

Secondly, as the Sun suggests, the move to allow Cabinet ministers to scrutinise an area of government that had been the Chancellor’s sole preserve is evidence of a power struggle at the top table.

The second point would be easier to dismiss had it not come after Clare Short’s call for an ”elegant” transfer of power from Tony to Gordon.

At least La Short’s resignation has spared her the arduous job of wading through 2,5000 pages of complex Treasury analysis of the euro.

The Sun says that the 18 technical studies stand over 2ft high and weigh in excess of two-and-a-half stones.

Ministers will be expected to digest this feast and then talk with a degree of knowledge to the Chancellor and Prime Minister in Cabinet and in ”individual cross-examinations” by the pair.

Which should set up an interesting meeting with John Prescott (can he read?) and the likes of Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell, who’s off on a jolly to the Cannes film festival today.

Perhaps she can think of it a script: Five Tests For Gordon. Or Five Go Mad.

Posted: 16th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment


A Wing And A Prayer

‘ALL right-thinking people agree that overcrowding in Her Majesty’s penal establishments is a national disgrace.

When life means life

So we are pleased to read in today’s Mirror that Dr Harold Shipman has resumed his medical career within the walls of HMP Frankland, Co Durham.

He is acting as a carer in the hospital wing, and has ”access to people in the same category as his victims”. A probation officer says that he has ”demonstrated that he is adept at putting himself in a position of trust towards such prisoners” and points out that it is ”this very trust that he so comprehensively abused during his years as a GP”.

If old Ships doesn’t make a serious dent in the prison population, then we here at Anorak will eat our hats, coats and Comfi-Slax elasticated leisure trousers.

And the RSPCA will be pleased to know that Shipman’s modus operandi is calm, quiet, and unlikely to disturb any animals in the vicinity.

Posted: 16th, May 2003 | In: Tabloids | Comment