Dog watches dog 18.03.05

CLAUDIA STAGES A BID FOR SWEDISH STARDOM

Early rising fans of the kennel have been pleading with us to
investigate what has become of talented GMTV journalist Claudia
Sermbezis, who they say seems to have disappeared from the screens of
the breakfast TV news bulletins in recent weeks.

Had she been poached by a rival channel?

Dog’s extensive
Scandinavian contacts can put their minds at rest. It turns out
Sermbezis has talents in other directions too, and is a rather fine
actress, having appeared in several productions at London’s Royal Court
Theatre with the stage name Claudia Fox.

But her latest
production has taken her to Stockholm, for a play about Sven Goran
Eriksson written by Nick Rosso in English, Italian and Swedish.

And who does Sermbezis play?

None
other than Faria Alam, the siren at the centre of the Svengate row so
brilliantly exposed by the News of the World last summer.

But don’t worry if you can’t afford the airfare. There are hopes that the play, a comedy, may come to London too.

Geldof sizes up the media

A classic piece of comedy timing from the British Press Awards. A
senior hack returns to his table. “You’ll never guess who I was
standing next to in the urinals,” he tells his table. “Bob
Geldof!” All are impressed.

Moments later, Geldof strides to the stage to pick up the Hugh Cudlipp Award.

“I’ve
just been for a piss,” he tells the 1,000- strong audience, “and can
confirm that it is true – rock stars do have bigger nobs than
journalists.”

Dog knows the identity of the journalist in
question. If a cash-stuffed envelope isn’t at the kennel by Monday, so
will everyone else.

  • Dog was also pleased to see Sunday Sport editorial supremo Tony Livesey on top form at the awards.

Such is the growth of the lippy northerner’s stock in television
circles after recent appearances on various game shows, he seems to
have found his way into the contacts books of various ‘Celebrity’
reality show researchers.

In recent weeks he’s been asked to do
Celebrity Fit Club, Celebrity Detox, and – perhaps most aptly of all –
Celebrity Shark Attack.

The stars of this dramatic show are
plunged underwater in a steel cage laced with fresh meat, and have to
hold their nerve while real sharks are unleashed.

Livesey reckons he’ll probably go for it on the grounds that it means a free holiday in South Africa.

Dog has another suggestion, Tone. How about Celebrity Straggly Beard Shave?

  • First rule of making an awards acceptance speech? Remember the
    name of the newspaper you work for. The Daily Telegraph’s Christopher
    Middleton will probably remember this now.

Pity he didn’t on the night, when he started by thanking editors from the sister Sunday title by mistake.

Biter is bitten

Jeremy Paxman has bitten back after his heated exchange with Health
Secretary John Reid on BBC 2’s Newsnight – but he may have bitten off
more than he can chew.

On Newsnight, Scots-born Reid’s hackles were raised when Paxman labelled him a Labour “attack dog”.

A hot under the collar Reid accused Paxman of patronising him and insulting him because of his Glasgow accent.

“I
have said to you before that if you have a PhD and a posh accent from a
school like yours, you are regarded as a sophisticate. You called me an
attack dog because I’ve a Glasgow accent.”

Paxman, who
immediately protested his innocence, has now risked further growling
from Reid by likening the dominance of “chip on their shoulder”

Scots in the UK Government to past British rule in India.

“Down here we live under a sort of Scottish Raj…I don’t see there is any reason for them to feel chippy.

“Do we complain about it? No we don’t. I think it’s absurd. I don’t understand wherein lies this angst.”

Obviously,
Paxman is oblivious to the fact that to be called a ‘raj’ in Scotland
is an exceedingly derogatory term of personal abuse on a par with the
Cword.

Perhaps he’d better give the ‘attack dog’ a peace bone.

Magazine finds out there is free and there is freelance

Freelance journalist George Dearsley was delighted to receive an
email from Matthew Elliott, editor of a new Manchester–based magazine
called Stash, described as a free magazine distributed monthly to
10,000 professionals working in trust, estate and wealth management
worldwide, asking if he would be interested in contributing freelance
lifestyle articles.

Dearsley duly replied asking for some rough idea of what Elliott was after, asked about payment rates and attached a CV.

Elliott replied: “Please can you email your CV in a Word file, as I can’t open the file you sent?

“As the magazine is in its early stages, we are not at present in a position to pay our writers for features.

“They do however get their name in print and are read by over 10,000 professionals based in the UK and offshore.”

Dearsley responded as follows: “Matthew

(a) it IS in a Word file and

(b) you must be JOKING! George

WAG

Southport’s towering rage Southport freesheet the Midweek Visiter
decided to lead its front page with the news that Trinity Mirror’s free
titles have a bigger distribution than five years ago.

The paper claims that if these papers were stacked “end on end” they
would be “over 95 times the height of Blackpool Tower” and to
illustrate the point, they use a picture of the stately pleasure dome.

Pity
no one told the production staff, who are based 25 miles away in
Liverpool, that Blackpool is Southport’s deadly rival for tourist cash
and that while the hacks were busy congratulating themselves on a
scoop, tourism bosses were fuming.

A stallholder at Southport’s
Pleasure Land, which is in constant battle with Blackpool’s Pleasure
Beach, sniffed: “It’s unhelpful to say the least. I don’t understand
it. It’s like putting a picture of Manchester’s shops on the front of
the Liverpool Echo or saying Wayne Rooney’s the best footballer”

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