Wednesday, January 05, 2005

The HDM intrudes on my holiday. Have just penned my weekly column. It was a rant, really, against Mike Read and his bloody awful charity single. If anything can kill compassion and cause a Diana-style backlash in the aftermath of the tsunami disaster, it's Mike Read and his ilk, a crop of no-hoper, past their sell-by date celebs. They really should just donate what they can and leave well alone, as they do more harm than good. We don't need them reminding us that we should donate. Ever. Hopefully, my colleagues at the paper will remember to put the thing in this week (Midgley, if you're reading this, give Johnson a nudge). Last week's month-by-month 'what's in store for 2005' - planned and written with precision for New Year's Eve publication - went in on bank holiday Monday, minus several months and thus, I thought, a half-decent running gag was ruined while my fine public now all assume that I think there are only seven months in a year.

Watched Dead Man Weds tonight. It raised a few wry smiles, mainly because I spend most of my week working on a newspaper called the Advertiser. Yes, yes, I am Johnny Vegas. Love writer Dave Spikey's comment in this interview: "I got obsessed for about a year or two, about local papers - free papers more than anything - because they are just full of nothing." They certainly are. It allows us to spend more time in the pub. Yet I'm surprised that nobody has pointed out yet that the idea's been done before, and a lot better, by Chris Langham. One of the episodes of People Like Us was a really acutely observed swipe at the production of a weekly that was "greater than the sum of its total". But did it have a regular animal rescue feature? Neither of the above comedies depict an editor who spends absolutely no time editing because he's either buying/selling on ebay or ripping off designs from The Guardian for use in the HDM. Odd that. (Shut up, you fool, lest you be dooced.- ed.) (Ah! There you are!- Killing Time).

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