Pandora

NOT SINCE Leonard Bernstein shook hands with one of the Black Panthers back in the late Sixties has there been such a comic moment of radical chicness as the recent meeting between the regal Hillary Clinton and the American feminist and playwright Eve Ensler. At a special performance for Hillary Clinton of Ensler's latest play Necessary Targets, at the John F Kennedy Center in Washington, the two ladies met in a line-up for a group photograph. As the cameraman took aim and everyone went silent, Eve Ensler was heard to cry out, right in front of the First Lady: "Say vagina!"

It is not known whether Ms Clinton was amused or appalled by Eve's daring joke, but she shouldn't have been surprised. That's just the sort of thing Pandora would expect from the author of an Obie Award-winning off-Broadway hit play called The Vagina Monologues.

LORD THURSO, the chief executive of the health spa Champneys, has installed a relaxation room at his London club in Piccadilly. One of the most dominant features of the room is a wonderful aquarium.

Oddly enough, several of the fish have gone missing. A spokesman told Pandora: "We have heard of people stealing towels and ashtrays but nicking oriental fish is too much. We plan to substitute some of the fish with piranhas, and will be on the look-out for a very relaxed guest with no fingers."

ANNEKA RICE (pictured) was supposed to appear on Breakfast with Frost last weekend with William Hague and Margaret Cook. She had to pull out at the last moment because of another, more important arrangement - a local panto in the Cotswolds.

During her performance there was a power failure. In the high-budget world of TV, Anneka would merely have had to make a quick phone call to have generators and lighting rigs coming out of her ears, but this wasn't Challenge Anneka, so the ever-resourceful celebrity performed the rest of her scenes by torchlight.

MEL SMITH has bought a pounds 1.49m house in St John's Wood complete with a swimming-pool. The funny-guy-turned-movie-director asked Aston Chase, London's elite estate agents, to find him a house similar to the one he has in Los Angeles. His previous London home had five floors and he was sick of schlepping up and down - and it's not as though he could do with the exercise.

THE LUNATICS are taking over the Assembly. Alan Hope, party chairman of the Monster Raving Loony Party, is recruiting Loonies to contest seats in the new Welsh Assembly. Among his party's ideas are the requirements that a medieval banquet precede all Assembly sessions and that disputes are settled by jousting. On the endless race to become Labour's prospective Assembly leader, Hope told Pandora that he favoured Rhodri Morgan over Alun Michael but, nonetheless, a Loony would have to stand against Morgan in Cardiff West. "Whoever stands will have to change their name to Jonah, because Jonah lived in Wales [sic]," said the Loony.

JACK STRAW'S speech at the Family Policy Studies Centre on Monday didn't just make waves with adoption workers and social workers. One female mobile phone owner discovered that it is not always good to talk. During the Home Secretary's speech, her mobile started to ring. Further humiliation followed as Straw asked the mobile phone offender to raise her hand and identify herself. Straw jokingly rebuked her with remarks about noise pollution and then resumed his speech.

But surely Mr Straw carries a mobile phone himself? "We will not discuss that on security grounds," a terse official from Straw's private office told Pandora.

PADDY ASHDOWN may be about to go, but he won't be forgotten in the highest political circles. The former prime minister John Major, not usually know for his warmth towards the Liberal Dempcrat leader, has accepted a Royal Marine figurine from members of the business forum the D Group - and has promptly named it "Paddy". The burning question is: where is Major going to put his Paddy?

Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
books
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
books
Arts and Entertainment
The man with the golden run: Daniel Craig as James Bond in 'Skyfall'

TV
Arts and Entertainment
'Waving Seal' by Luke Wilkinson was Highly Commended in the Portraits category

photography
Arts and Entertainment
The eyes have it: Kate Bush
music
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Art
Arts and Entertainment
Diana Beard, nicknamed by the press as 'Dirty Diana'

Bake Off
Arts and Entertainment
The X Factor 2014 judges: Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole, Mel B and Louis Walsh

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Gregg Wallace was caught by a camera van driving 32mph over the speed limit

TV
Arts and Entertainment
books
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and the Dalek meet
tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Arts and Entertainment
Star turns: Montacute House
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Iain reacts to his GBBO disaster

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Outlaw Pete is based on an eight-minute ballad from Springsteen’s 2009 Working on a Dream album

books
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012

film
Arts and Entertainment
Simon Cowell is less than impressed with the Strictly/X Factor scheduling clash

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Gothic revival: artist Dave McKean’s poster for Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination
Exhibition
Arts and Entertainment
Diana Beard has left the Great British Bake Off 2014

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Lisa Kudrow, Courtney Cox and Jennifer Anniston reunite for a mini Friends sketch on Jimmy Kimmel Live

TV
Arts and Entertainment
TVDessert week was full of the usual dramas as 'bingate' ensued
Arts and Entertainment
Clara and the twelfth Doctor embark on their first adventure together
TVThe regulator received six complaints on Saturday night
Arts and Entertainment
Vinyl demand: a factory making the old-style discs
musicManufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl
Arts and Entertainment
David Baddiel concedes his show takes its inspiration from the hit US series 'Modern Family'
comedyNew comedy festival out to show that there’s more to Jewish humour than rabbi jokes
Arts and Entertainment
Puff Daddy: One Direction may actually be able to use the outrage to boost their credibility

music
Arts and Entertainment
Suha Arraf’s film ‘Villa Touma’ (left) is set in Ramallah and all the actresses are Palestinian

film
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

    'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

    US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
    Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

    A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

    Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
    Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

    James Frey's literary treasure hunt

    Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
    Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

    Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

    What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
    Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

    Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

    Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
    Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

    The big names to look for this fashion week

    This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
    Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

    'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

    Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
    Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

    Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

    Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
    Al Pacino wows Venice

    Al Pacino wows Venice

    Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
    Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

    Neil Lawson Baker interview

    ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
    The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

    The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

    Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
    The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

    The model for a gadget launch

    Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
    Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

    She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

    Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
    Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

    Get well soon, Joan Rivers

    She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
    Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

    A fresh take on an old foe

    Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering