I've been away for the weekend. Very nice it was too, thanks for asking.
Anyway, denied access to the internet and sadly without seeing any tabloid stories over the weekend - I feel the humanity returning to my body - I had to rely on a quick glimpse at the Observer and Times to keep me going.
Two stories were there, clearly very late April Fools that have caught everyone else on the hop. Luckily I was able to see them for what they are, total nonsense, joke stories put there to catch out the unwary reader.
Firstly, I read the hilarious "story" about Boris Johnson meeting with Lily Allen to discuss knife crime! I was thumping the carpet with joy and mirth as I read it. I mean, really! As if anyone's going to believe that kind of bollocks. Seriously! Boris Johnson is an intelligent politician nowadays, not that straw-haired oaf you used to see on the telly - he must be; the Evening Standard, that bastion of news, backed him to win the election, and anyone backed by that newspaper group has always been a wonderful, decent and honest politician. Well except maybe Oswald Mosley. And Thatcher. And Bush. Look, that's beside the point. Boris is clearly a sensible, intelligent kind of chap - he's not going to be having a meeting with Lily bloody Allen on the basis of some wittering toss on her MySpace page, is he! I mean, anyone who would do such a thing would instantly lose every single atom of credibility from their being and forever hence be regarded as a laughable cunt of the highest order.
So, clearly, well done lads. Well done for the prank, but come off it. No politician - not even Big Boris - would treat the problem of crime with such worthless lack of intellectualism that they would talk to Lily Allen about it. No, tish and tash and bibble, as a 1987 Stephen Fry would probably say. Silly! You almost had me going, but no.
Secondly I read a wonderful piece in the Observer - quite the most biting bit of satire I've seen in all my life. It was a spectacularly droll piss-take of those 'lifestyle' bullshit pieces that appear in Sunday mags, especially the Observer in fact now I come to think of it, and claimed to be dealing with the credit crunch and how people were 'coping'. But the magnificence of the humour was there for all to see. They invented a so-called Liverpudlian 'fitness fanatic' who had to forgo the gym (!) and work from home as a Cambridge diet consultant, as if that was genuinely a tough thing to do - oh, it was too much. Also a couple who'd made the terrible sacrifice of swapping branded products for supermarket own-label stuff, as if that was really an awfully tough thing to do - delightful humour! Brilliant mockery of the kind of self-absorbed dogshit you see in Sunday papers - especially when you realised that in the same publication, in the Food Monthly section, was a piece about Cambodian peasants starving, suffering malnutrition and dying thanks to rising food and fuel prices - the real victims of the current economic problems (though of course the author couldn't quite put his finger on 'what went wrong' until the penultimate paragraph, when they wondered if maybe the markets, WTO and so on had somehow deliberately let these people down, and that in fact, everything had 'gone right'.) I mean, compared to that, no-one would dare claim that being a double-income family with loads of kids living somewhere really posh would be a struggle, would they? No-one would ever dare do that. That's what tipped me off that the articles about the hand-wringing numpties switching to own-brand products or having to sell their Honda Civic were another classic spoof.
So that's the good news. There's still plenty of room for a good old-fashioned prank article in the British press. Wonderful stuff! I'm sure I'll find many more to come this week. Obviously I haven't checked back with those publications to see the 'we fooled you!' messages there, but I'm sure they're there. They must be.