Dog watches dog 19.06.03

Not quite ‘warts and all’ at Telegraph

In The Daily Telegraph last week, obituaries editor Andrew McKie attacked the “amazingly banal” death notices in US papers.

So it was with some amusement that Dog’s alert spotter at The Diplomat magazine, Alastair Buchan, turned to that day’s “warts and all” Telegraph obit page. There was a long piece on Professor Phil Williams, the scientist-turned politician who, the paper noted flatly, had “died on Tuesday aged 64”.

But nowhere in the 600-word piece was there any mention of how the good professor had met his maker.

Fortunately, the same day’s Sun and Mirror were on hand with a more, er, blow-by-blow account of his demise, minutes after having been given oral sex in a massage parlour called A Touch of Class.

Clype predictions miss for Lady C

Scotland on Sunday’s Clype columnist will doubtless be suffering considerable angst that The Herald’s political editor, Catherine MacLeod, did not feature in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Clype, who has dubbed MacLeod “Scotland’s First Lady of journalism”, snidely predicted that she faced certain ennoblement after being spotted walking arm-in-arm with Cherie Blair at a function in Westminster.

This led to a follow-up that rumours now abounded at the Commons that “an even greater destiny may face the Herald’s well-connected political editor. Now that Fiona Millar, Cherie’s key aide, is to leave her post later this year, ‘Lady Catherine’ might just be the ticket as her replacement.”

Dog, knowing MacLeod’s admiration for fellow Scot, Chancellor Gordon Brown, feels Clype should appreciate that she is well-connected enough not to put her head in the lion’s mouth and know that you offend the future Prime Minister at your peril.

Hart-broken Dog

Nul points to Dog for a glaring error in last week’s piece about the Sevenoaks Chronicle’s Paul Hart coming bottom in the office fantasy football league. Hart, of course, is the paper’s sports editor, not its editor. Which is why the story was funny. Or would have been, had we got it right. Apologies to Hart and to his editor Frank Baldwin. More promising kennel careers come to an end as those responsible pay the ultimate price.

Stott gets Murdoch grunt of approval

As Les Hinton, executive chairman of News International, and Rupert Murdoch took off from JFK International airport for Sydney the other day, Hinton fished in his bag and produced a copy of Richard Stott’s memoirs, Dogs and Lampposts.

Murdoch, with all the charm of an Australian, grabbed it. “I thought you’d seen it before,” said Hinton.

“Barely glanced at it,” said Murdoch.

“You might not like it, boss,” warned Hinton.

Hours later, after quite a few grunts and tuts and sharp in-takes of breath where Murdoch found himself being barbecued for the closure of Today, he handed the book back to Hinton. “What do you think, boss?”

“Well, at least he can write,” said Murdoch, grudgingly.

Groupie for the day

The NUJ’s Manchester office secretary, Sue Orton, took a break from her usual administrative duties to meet Polish trade union hero Lech Walesa.

The union’s Manchester office was invited by the Lord Mayor of Leicester to send a representative to a reception honouring the famous trade unionist.

Orton, who has worked for the union for 24 years, was the only member of the Manchester team available so ended up going along.

She said: “It was very nice. I ended up having about a 10-minute conversation with him. He’s a hero of the trade union movement, I got his autograph and everything – I was a groupie for the day.”

For honarary professors & lecturers

The University of Stirling has just appointed a lecturer in journalism to teach its “distinctive new degree course”. Presumably, the successful candidate’s first task will be to teach the spelling of “honorary”. Unless Jon Snow, John Willis, David Elstein and many other luminaries associated with the prestigious school have adopted a unique spelling for their honorary positions.

 

A letter pops through the kennel letterbox following our earth-shattering exclusive about the number of Herts & Essex Newspapers’ staff apparently moonlighting as Coronation Street stars.

“Dearest Dog,

We have not yet found the guilty party behind the revelations of our moonlighting in various soap productions on television (Dog, 30 May), although we have our suspicions. However, belatedly, we should add our latest member of staff to the cast list.

The new sub-editor on the Herts & Essex Observer is none other than Joanna Taylor, erstwhile glamourbabe of Hollyoaks “fame”!

But while some supplement their meagre Herts and Essex offerings with part-time dramatic work on popular British television, one man is in another league earnings-wise. To us, he’s the deputy editor of the Harlow Star, but you probably know him from his film work – he’s Paul Newman.

Yours sincerely, The Soap Queen”

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