AS Britain gathered around the TV to watch a Norwegian man prance around on stage dressed as a giant, sequinned dove, an Italian heavy metal band snort broken glass and Britain’s James Newman do not much, Dominic Cummings was furiously pumping out a 55-strong Twitter thread.
In fact, I’m not entirely sure he’s not still going, ensconced in his North London enclave.
At the same time, his greatest foe, Carrie Symonds, read the room better.
In the middle of a miserable, schizophrenic May, when everyone needs a bit of cheer, Boris Johnson’s fiancée quietly sent out Save the Date cards to friends and family — coincidentally, or other-wise — ensuring all (entirely positive) headlines went her way, not his.
Carrie 1, Dominic 0.
Bitter Dominic is still tweeting from an un-verified account, and has 72,000 followers.
Carrie, a woman 16 years his junior, has a blue tick — and 125,000 followers.
PETULANT TEENAGE BOY
The bald one comes across as a petulant teenage boy, sulking because the cool kids at school won’t have him in their gang.
Like a 21st Century Kevin The Teenager, he promptly “unfollowed” his old boss after getting the sack.
Presumably, grown man Boris is still losing sleep over it.
News of the happy couple’s wedding in July 2022 was met with the usual scepticism from certain circles.
“Introducing the next ex Mrs Johnson”, quipped one raconteur, while someone else tweeted: “A vacancy has arisen for the post of Mistress to the Prime Minister. Job starts July 2022.”
Another LOL-merchant added: “Breaking: Single mother to marry immigrant and live at taxpayers’ expense in hugely expensive council house. Priti Patel is understood to be f***ing livid.”
The usual trope wheeled out by Carrie’s critics is that she’s a power-hungry, social-climbing, desperately ambitious woman who is willing to sleep her way to the top.
Reports that the PM ordered £27,000-worth of posh, organic Daylesford grub to Downing Street over the past ten months are also being blamed on Carrie.
The inference being that portly Boris would happily live off Greggs given half a chance.
That Daylesford is owned by Lady Bamford, whose husband is a huge Tory benefactor through his JCB empire, means accusations of cronyism are also being bandied about.
Until Carrie is driven down the aisle on a JCB, some people will never be happy.
Sure, Boris Johnson isn’t an Abercrombie & Fitch model.
'MISSING THE POINT'
But that’s entirely missing the point.
Power is attractive, and in the flesh — of which there is a varying amount depending on how much jogging he is doing — Boris is charismatic, witty and unquestionably smart.
Little, meanwhile, is said about Cummings’s ruth-less levels of ambition.
A man who Boris stuck his neck out for, even after he trekked to Barnard Castle to test his eyesight, has turned on him quicker than you can say “Specsavers”.
In his latest anti-Government broadside, Dominic repeated claims that Boris initially favoured a herd-immunity approach to tackling Covid-19.
Tomorrow he will give evidence to MPs investigating the Cabinet’s response to the pandemic.
Clearly, he’s after blood.
Number 10 has hastily denied claims that Boris missed early Cobra meetings to pen a book about William Shakespeare.
But as The Bard once wrote, the course of true love never did run smooth.
Boris and Carrie have overcome far, far worse in their professional and personal lives.
When Carrie finally says: “I do”, Dominic’s place as yesterday’s man — and Boris’s most embittered ex — will be cemented.
Daft as an air brush
The newly released, highly airbrushed photo of the Friends cast says everything you need to know about Hollywood double standards.
While Matthew Perry, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc look like three normal blokes in their fifties, albeit ones with very white teeth, the women have barely aged a day.
Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox and Lisa Kudrow clearly have portraits growing dust in the attic. Or very good cosmetic “helpers”.
Yet imagine the public outcry had any of the women turned up with grey hair, pot bellies or a whiskery chin.
Until such expectation for women to look permanently 34 fades, and until airbrushing isn’t a thing, Tinseltown will never change.
Auntie ought to pay
Martin Bashir has long been a busted flush. But to blame solely him for Princess Diana’s death is wrong.
No one could have foreseen the circumstances that killed her, and no one made her ride without a seat-belt in that car in Paris in 1997.
By the same token, it’s unfair on the thousands of decent, hard-working BBC employees – some of whom weren’t even born at the time of Bashir’s interview more than 25 years ago – to be tainted by the appalling failings of corporation fat-cats before them.
But were the Beeb a Premier League football club, such behaviour would see them being docked points and fined millions.
And if the BBC were a tabloid newspaper, it would probably be shut down.
So why isn’t the BBC being made to refund licence-fee payers for, say, a year?
Or, at the very least, made to stop charging the over-75s?
Mum Naomi is inspiration
The number of women delaying motherhood has soared.
An average of three women over the age of 50 gave birth every week last year, a new report says.
New mum Naomi Campbell, 51, is the latest example.
Twitter being Twitter – a sort of doggy daycare for rabid Dobermans – it was deluged with the outraged, calling her irresponsible and pointing out she will be 66 when the poor kid takes her GCSEs.
At present, any woman giving birth over the age of 35 is classed as “geriatric”, regardless of their physical health.
Naomi – by this token a geriatric geriatric – is fitter than a racing snake and has access to the best medical care.
We are all living longer and 60 is the new 40. We need to update our medical terms. A hundred years ago Naomi would have been a dried-up old spinster-hag. Today, men young and old fancy her – she even dated One
Direction’s Liam Payne, a boy barely out of short trousers.
Naomi has given hope to millions of women struggling to conceive, and should be applauded for it.
Big up, Mark
We can all relate to Mark Wahlberg.
Last month, he was a six-packed, gym-obsessed Calvin Klein model-like pin-up.
Now he has piled on 20lbs in three weeks to play a heavyweight boxer in his latest film.
As someone who once ballooned by 11lbs over the course of one very festive Christmas, I applaud his dedication.
The annual Sunday Times Rich List is always depressing.
The Under-30s list is especially galling, and makes me want to throw myself off a bridge.
This year was doubly soul-destroying, as it emerged billionaires have grown in number thanks to a “lucrative” pandemic.
Given I am the kind of sloven who has, on more than one occasion, ordered three Deliveroos in a day, I’m taking partial credit for the delivery firm being worth £7.6billion.
On a more serious note, emerging in the week that Boris Johnson’s nurse Jenny McGee quit in protest at plans to give heroic NHS workers a pathetic one per cent pay rise, never has inequality been so blatant.
There are many great things about the impending Freedom Day, June 21.
But there are three lockdown restrictions I will miss: Pub table-service, gym-goers cleaning up after themselves and, controversially, the wearing of masks on public transport.
One of the greatest luxuries of recent times has been scanning a phone over a bar menu, and a couple of pints and some sweet potato fries appearing, as if by magic, two minutes later.
Similarly, it’s been great seeing heaving, sweating men (and women) diligently anti-bac’ing dumbbells in my once-grubby branch of Fitness First.
And Public Health England’s recent declaration that barely a single case of the flu had been detected in the UK since restrictions began can’t be entirely coincidental?
Not only this, but masks hide a multitude of jowly sins and spots . . . and, win-win, make it easier to feign non-recognition of a colleague or old acquaintance.
Nothing makes me more inclined to inhale five Big Macs back to back than the sight of 90 vegan protesters blockading McDonald’s.
In determination that the burger behemoth become “fully plant-based” by 2025, the angry carrot-crunchers successfully ensured thousands of people went without chips yesterday.
Never mind that the chain – founded in 1955 on the back of two all-beef patties, with special sauce, in a sesame seed bun – already offers veggie options and, progressively, has only used free-range eggs since 2008.
But no. That’s not enough for these clowns – many of whom, aptly, were dressed as Ronald McDonald.
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