Funny, isn’t it, how forgiving we can be, in this fine tolerant land of ours? How, despite the fact that we disagree, however strongly, with extreme religious conservative viewpoints, we are poised, upon perceiving a subtle blue shift in wavelength, ready to forgive, or excuse, or apologise for, the philosophical monoglot who espouses them. Not that we could strictly label Ann Widdecombe dance moves ‘subtle.’ Yet, in demonstration, perhaps, of our retained infantile, ignorant tendency to laugh and stare at circus freaks, we are entertained to the brink of having her win the bloody thing! Presumably because we’re oblivious to some of the readily-aired opinions that have emanated from the head of this particular maiden. All of a sudden, she’s a national treasure: “Ahh, so she’s not so bad, after all!”


Ann, in subscribing, big style, to the Vatican’s prescribing and the utterances of its untouchable supremo, is as immovable as she is on the dancefloor. (Rumour has it the January transfer window may see her snapped up by Blackburn Rovers, whose game plan yesterday appeared to be based on Antony Gormley’s Another Place.) Perhaps cutting her some slack, however, I was with her on her calling out Blair on his previously held, Vatican-contravening positions, following his obsequious conversion. Wonder what she makes, then, of The Pope’s latest supposed edging towards the real world, over-hyped as a supposed back-track on the issue of condoms. The Vatican has since moved to clarify his language, as being applicable to both genders, in case we mistook him for someone with a bias against women, which wouldn’t do at all.

I imagine he must be unhappy with his infallibility-compromising proof-readers. But it is hard to tell from a smile as unnerving as that of an altar wine-stunned old popinjay. Perhaps our four-legged Prime Minister could enlighten us by mailing him one of his new questionnaires: ‘… an objective measure of happiness’, the most subjective of states. But ‘Dave’, I thought you knew the state of our well-being? Because you’ve just told us! About how overjoyed we all are at the news of some other other-world inhabitants’ forthcoming splicing. And you’ve benignantly given us all the day off. Brilliant: royal nuptials to look forward to – just what the country needs! The often appalling behaviour dancing that accompanies all day drinking at weddings.

Still, at least Ann is doing her bit.


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