20.12.04

Slow news, bright vase


I'm torn between working-mode and holiday-mode today. The cynics amongst you might very well be sitting there trying to figure out what's new about that! I have been sitting in front of this computer for the past four hours, and not a hand has been turned in all that time. I did read the newspaper (important research), and was slightly less than amazed at the headline, which loudly proclaimed: 'Talentless Holyrood damned by Labour veteran. Devastating attack on Jack McConnell as Lord Sewel warns executive needs an injection of expertise', as if the poor calibre of the devolved Scottish government was in any way news! My suspicion that today was a slow one for the newspapers was confirmed with a glance at the other front page headlines. Under a quarter page photograph of Leonardo diCaprio, Kate Beckinsdale and Cate Blanchett, we are advised that 'Flying high', are 'The Aviator and his Ladies': yup, a supposedly serious newspaper (The Scotsman) advertising the latest Hollywood 'must miss' film on its front page... makes you wonder. Not quite as much as the small stories underneath: Delia Smith (Britain's version of an honest Martha Stewart) is to hang up her apron after 30 years as Britain's kitchen angel; the editors of St Andrews university's student newspaper have been ordered to 'undergo cultural and diversity training' after one of their articles poked fun at the Welsh; and a bit about some foreign president being named Time Person of the Year (although I've never read Time, I always believed that it was a serious publication). We are also informed that Liz McColgan (the track legend, apparently) is happy to be 40 and pregnant with her fifth child, and that she would never do a Paula Radcliffe. You know. I am happy that she's happy... but it hardly qualifies as front page news. The Scotsman, although a little right-wing for my particular prejudices, used to be a reasonably good quality newspaper. Now, however, it seems to be trying to compete with The Daily Mail (the 'quality' [sic] tabloid so beloved of Lt. Col. (ret.) Ramsay Huffington-Buffington MacGregor types). I think I will stick to The Herald, The Guardian and (don't tell anyone) The Daily Rangers... sorry, Daily Record (only for the footie, you understand). As for the high-key vase! I just thought it looked nice (unlike today's Scotsman)

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