Sunday 8 July 2012 was the day when the British nation united over the man who has come to symbolise Wimbledon. No, not Andy Murray – Sir Cliff Richard and his revolting jacket. To a man and woman, the people rose up and protested. You will see why in a moment. I mean, it isn’t as if the day wasn’t already sufficiently traumatic. WTF has no nails left to speak of after watching our British Hope up against the best tennis player since Henry V111. 76 years of failure does things to the national psyche and the prospect of this talented, if seemingly dour, Scot actually winning the thing made for a pretty tense afternoon, I can tell you. The last thing we needed was a pillock in a Union Jack jacket distracting us from this historic moment. Anyway, Andy lost, albeit very respectably, and he then cried in front of the cameras, at which point the British public finally took him to their hearts after years of slagging him off as a miserable little git who wasn’t even English, didn’t smile and had the mother from hell. We are used to not winning things over here. Indeed, WTF suspects that we rather like it that way. This is the country that bigged up Eddie the Eagle. We are suspicious of single-minded success-seekers. There is something not quite British about it. Meanwhile, this being celeb-obsessed Britain,the Royal Box was crammed with them, many of whom didn’t seem to have the faintest idea why they were there and which end of the racquet was which. At least Sir Cliff and Her Holiness the Duchess of Cambridge love tennis. Which is probably more than can be said for David Beckham, looking like an extra from Cyrano de Bergerac, Mrs Beckham, looking bored to tears and pouting up a storm, Dr Who and other luminaries of showbiz. WTF strongly suspects that the über-celeb-obsessed BBC invited them all so that we had something to look at during the delay when they needed to close the roof. But these freebies must have been a real kick in the teeth to the sad and soggy fans (read lunatics) who had camped for 2 days in very watery conditions to get a ticket or to sit in pissing rain on Henman Hill or is it Murray Mound. WTF is only surprised that the cast members of The Only Way is Essex were denied front row seats next to Kate and Pippa. I am sure that they could have had a nice chat with David Cameron about House of Lords reform. And so as promised, back to Sir Cliff.
There are many reasons to applaud the coming of the sliding roof over Centre Court, not least that it allows the match to be played at all. But the biggest benefit is that punters are spared a repetition of 1996 when Sir Cliff filled in a lengthy rain-break by serenading Centre Court with a selection of his greatest hits (if that isn’t an oxymoron). That rain break seemed to last longer than the Great Flood. Some of us are still seeking assistance from healthcare professionals as a result. Anyway, 300,000 tons of machinery have guaranteed that Sir Cliff can no longer give us his rendition of Bachelor Boy so he has had to find new ways of assaulting our senses. This year he went for a double whammy. There was his toe-curling performance at the Diamanté Jubilee resplendent in pink satin and a pink lamé tie. And there was last Sunday when he appeared in this monstrosity. The expression of the man sitting next to him says it all. It is one thing to fly the flag. It is quite another thing to wear it. Those buttons are particularly offensive. WTF does not wish to be unkind, it being alien to her nature, but it has to be said that there are a number of aspects to Sir Cliff’s appearance that would suggest some interference with the workings of nature.
Here is Nicole Scherzinger looking absurd. I seem to have written that sentence before.
And this is what exactly? WTF deplores a one-armed top almost above all things, but one-legged jeans really are the pits. Or is that jean? It may do for Long John Silver but on a long-limbed, duoped pop star, there is no point save to make Nicole, a good looking woman by any standards, look silly. WTF struggles to understand the thought process that led Nicole to walk onstage in this ensemble.
And here is singer, Playboy model, actress and who knows what else, Aubrey O’Day, a person whose main purpose in life appears to be to flash her arse and breasts at the cameras in the pursuit of fame.
Message to Aubrey – if you are going to flash your arse, then go the whole hog and moon away like someone on a stag weekend in Vilnius. At the moment, you are coming across as willing to wound but afraid to strike. This is just so wrong on every conceivable level. Don’t you know how cheap you look? Don’t you care? And if you don’t care, why don’t you care? WTF is not sure which is worse, but she is very clear that the whole outfit is revolting and should be the subject of some form of bye-law banning it in public.
I want to make it very clear that WTF is not fattist. It is just that wearing skin tight lycra in public is unacceptable on anyone big or small unless they are an athlete, a swimmer, a ballet dancer or someone heading for the gym. Those of a nervous disposition should take a trip to the bathroom at this point and swallow a fistful of SSRI’s before reading on.
OK. Are you ready? Here is singer, fashion designer and feminist, Beth Ditto.
WTF has to admit that on seeing Beth parading her tattooes and moose knuckle, she emitted a squawk and she started shouting no, no, no!!!! to the great surprise of her houseguest. The houseguest then saw the picture, she emitted a squawk and she started shouting no, no no!!! as well. In fact, it is hard to see what response other than shouting no, no no!!! could be appropriate.
Such is the dreariness of the weather here that it is a relief to escape to the Principality of Monaco, there to bathe in the glamour of the House of Grimaldi. Monaco is a tinpot state-let like Ruritania but peopled with Grimaldis and tax exiles. (These are some of the same tax exiles who pontificate about the way things are run in the UK even though they would rather have their teeth extracted with rusty pliers than cough up and pay for them to be run better). The Grimaldis have been running the show since a pirate called Grimaldi landed there in 1297 and the present lot are as weird as any family since the Munsters. Here is Her Serene Highness Princess Stéphanie.
HSH Stéph has a stunning figure, although spending year upon year in the sun glistening with Factor 2 oil has probably not done her too many favours. She has had a tumultous lovelife. After dating actors various like Rob Lowe, she married her bodyguard (but only after their two children were born). That foundered when he was photographed in a compromising position in the pool with Miss Nude Belgium. She had an affair with a married elephant trainer and also with someone else who fathered her third child but has never been named. She then had a shortlived marriage to a trapeze artiste. She now seems to be single, which in her case is probably a good idea, and devotes herself to good works, particularly AIDS charities. Here she is at a gala dressed as one of the peasant chorus in Don Giovanni. WTF understands the red ribbon theme, but why that translates into a leather dirndl and split gypsy skirt, she cannot say.
Nowadays, little girls dream marrying a footballer, living in a mock-Tudor monstrosity with its own gym and appearing over 27 pages of Hello! However, once upon a time, little girls would dream of marrying a handsome prince and living happily ever after in a pink palace. Charlene’s dream made flesh is shown here in the balding, bespectacled form of HSH Al. According to the Monegasque website, he is known as the Green Prince because of his interest in the environment. This came as news to WTF who had always assumed that he just loafed around the place being a playboy and fathering illegitimate children. Charlene, who is South African and used to be swimmer, did marry a prince and they live in a pink palace but not happily ever after. This was a woman who tried to leg it out of Monaco days before the nuptials last year and who cried throughout the ceremony and I don’t mean tears of joy. Just looking at her here suggests that she is fantasising about getting the first SAA flight back to the Veldt – if she leant any further away from her spouse, she would fall over. As for the outfit, it can best be described as strange. Apart from the visible nipple activity, why is she wearing that giant bandage? WTF can only speculate that the Monegasque Court has bound her into it to prevent her whipping out her mobile phone à la Katie Holmes and booking her ticket home.