News? Worthy?

One post in January. One limp, diabetic post and that’s all I have to give account of myself in the last 31 days. You know things are getting rough when you have to float a piece of writing on something as perilously fragile as Nick Knowles’ career. He’s the entertainment equivalent of Theresa May, a creature who has surely gasped her last breath as a credible human being. Her every word and act is the final spray from a cheap aerosol and her exhausted face resembles a long faded memory of an abandoned quarry. And she runs the country. If you can make sense of that then be my guest.

Sadly we’ve just had one of those weeks where there has been so little news that people like Theresa May (and her Brexit adventures) keep bobbing to the top like a fatty stool. The problem with this is that when there isn’t much going on we find that even less relevant events are pushed to the front and this tricks us into thinking that they are more important than they really are. In fact most of them aren’t important at all. What Meghan Markle wore to some charity dinner is of absolutely no consequence to anyone or anything and what Kate Middleton wore in Oslo this week is of even less gravity. However some of the more appalling newspapers like The Daily Mail seemed to think this was far more worthy than death and taxes, principally because both these yawning clothes horses wore outfits by the same designer. In case you were interested Meghan won the battle of the princesses because she looked normal while Kate turned out looking like a roll of kitchen towel that had been left out next to the chip fryer for too long.

Elsewhere in the news this morning we see that Lady Gaga has halted some tour or other due to an unspecified ‘severe pain’. It doesn’t matter that I have no firm opinion on Lady Gaga. She is clearly a few bulbs short of a raised bed but that doesn’t make her a force of evil. However, if she, or more accurately her ‘people’ can only be bothered to divulge something as ambiguous as ‘severe pain’ then it shouldn’t warrant a slot on the home page of BBC News. Treading on a plug causes severe pain. Treading on Lego causes severe pain. Listening to John Humphreys causes indescribable pain but none of that is a justifiable distraction of any kind. I hope Gaga’s ‘severe pain’ eases off with a couple of Ibuprofen and a hot water bottle. I doubt anyone will be rushing to writing an obituary any time soon. I’ll feel sorry if I’m wrong about that.

The BBC continue on this theme of ‘non-news’ with the story of the dim-witted man who had to watch Coronation Street to learn about testicular cancer. By carefully following the labyrinthine plot involving some bistro owner who finds a lump, young Scott Wray felt suitably charged enough to inspect his ballsack more thoroughly in the shower (too much information?) and lo and behold also found a lump, only his lump was a real one, not a fake one made up to simultaneously entertain a third of a nation and to educate people about health problems that really shouldn’t have to wait until your next fix of a northern soap opera.

To further prove my point that we are in a news desert at the moment here is the current, live leading story:

“Prominent Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg has accused Treasury officials of “fiddling the figures” on Brexit to keep the UK in the European Union customs union.”

The news is meant to draw you in, to tickle your curiosity and make you drool for more. Which part of that leading story is even slightly interesting? Any story involving a customs union is likely to be about as sexy as a cold shower with Will Young.

We finish with the news that the Birmingham Repertory Theatre have totally run out of ideas and so are converting a heart warming story about 2 gay penguins into a play. It appears that what the world, or just Birmingham, needs right now is an informative, if highly unlikely yarn about 2 homosexual penguins in New York who adopt a baby penguin turned into a play (aimed at children, apparently) and performed by the kind of actors who have to do 2 seasons at Butlins just to get their equity card. I’m all for the arts and very all for equality for everyone regardless of colour, faith or sexuality but teaching kids about same sex penguins doesn’t quite seem like the best way forward. Maybe Coronation Street could give it a shot.

No news is good news, the old saying goes, and like a lot of old sayings that’s a load of utter crap. What we need right now is a terrorist ‘incident’, a sporting ‘revelation’, something suitably ‘unprecedented’ involving a three legged giraffe, a celebrity death in mysterious circumstances and a sex scandal featuring Jacob Rees-Mogg, Theresa May, Lady Gaga and Scott Wray’s remaining testicle. Now that I would read.

G B Hewitt. 03.02.2018



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