There's a meme going round at the moment asking where you were when great events of our time happened, like Gazza's tears and JFK being shot, and Princess Diana dying of course. I remember rather well where I was when that last one all kicked off - in a creaky Nissan Bluebird minicab heading home from a horrifically bad nightclub in Kingston (upon Thames, not Jamaica). As the welds in the chassis gradually wore away in the night air, the driver turned round, knowing he was imparting information we hadn't yet heard.
He had a massive neck, I mean bigger than Simon Cowell's, it was like a roll of carpet, and bright red as well, sticking out of his polo shirt. He turned round to we shandied-up souls wasting away on the back seat and confided in us the terrible news.
"Course, Dodi Fayed's brown bread."
"Yeah. Di's injured too."
And that was that. We spent the rest of the journey back home in near-silence, not so much because of respect for Our Queen of Hearts but more from the sheer intoxication of countless glasses of fizzy bubbly beer, bouncing around the dancefloor to appallingly bad music and, naturally, utterly failing to get anywhere near a snog and a fumble. Ah, the impetuosity - and rubbishness - of youth.
Anyway, if you remember back those nearly almost exactly 11 years, you'll recall that in the wake of the death of Diana, certain tabloids (including our friends at the Mail) promised they would never again stoop so low as to pay the accursed paparazzi for long-lens pictures of celebrities. What a noble step to take in the cold light of day. What a mark of integrity.
11 years later, those principles still stand stro... oh.
Yes, it's the grainiest and most intrusive pictures you're ever likely to see, of Uma Thurman and her fiance going for a swim at night.
Uma Thurman's romance with financier fiancé Arpad 'Arki' Busson is going just swimmingly, judging by their latest dalliance.
The pair slipped off for a moonlight swim while holidaying together in Italy, exchanging kisses as they cooled off from the hot summer night.
Well you say 'slipped off' but it's not really 'slipping off' if you've got some chimp with a giant camera taking pictures of you all the time, is it? And what possible justification is there for these pictures? So a couple like being in each other's company - so what? Is that all there is to it? They're not married to other people; they're not breaking any laws; they're just bloody trying to find some privacy - privacy which is unfortunately denied them, because of the bloke with the sodding great lens.
Once again came the bleats of morality after the Max Mosley affair. Newspapers couldn't do their jobs properly if they were restrained on looking into people's private affairs, it was claimed. The guilty would get away with scandals, it was claimed. Our very democracy was in jeopardy, it was claimed.
Bullshit. The tabs were just crapping themselves because they felt it might be the thin end of the wedge and they'd have to stop printing grainy long-lens celebrity pap bollocks like this, with no public interest justification whatsoever, rather than going out and finding some real bloody news.
Did we really believe it 11 years ago, in those 'dark days'? We shouldn't have, if we did. If anything, it's worse than ever. Hell, even Mail readers themselves are pissed off:
It doesn't appear as though this couple have much option but to share their private moments. What a pity that they cannot be allowed to enjoy their holiday in peace.
- Helen, Birmingham, 26/8/2008 11:53
Is there nothing a celebrity can do in private?
- kathy pearson, exeter uk, 26/8/2008 14:28
I agree with K.Pearson in Exeter, the photogrpher was a long way away when this picture was taken with a long distance lens.
- H.McQuarrie, Hampshire, 26/8/2008 18:21
I feel like a peeping Tom looking at these pics.
- CC, leith,uk, 26/8/2008 18:47
I rather fear that's the whole idea, CC.
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