Pandora

"THE CELEB bash you can't crash" said the hype for Birthdays, the new show from Anthony-Noel Kelly, the notorious Poshopolis artist and jailbird. Pandora turned up anyway at the East End's 291 Gallery for a look. Birthdays comprises 168 photos of naked people. One octogenarian revealed that His Master's Vice had bunged her a couple of ponies to bare all, then bitched that she'd "been waiting all evening for Kelly to buy me a drink".

u

GREEN ROOM gossip has BBC suits mulling a show uniting Dale Winton with Jimmy Nail. Did someone say The Odd Couple?

u

CONTACTING HOST... the worldwide wait may soon be over, as the Vatican edges closer to naming its patron saint of the I-net. The front-runner is St Isidore of Seville, who 1,400 years ago compiled a 20-volume dictionary "similar to a primitive database". Other candidates floating on the Holy See are San Pedro Regalado, a recondite 15th-century Spanish priest, and Santa Tecia of Catalonia. Digital devotees have established an irony-rich online confessional where penitent Netizens can own up to a variety of sins. First item on the menu? Not paying for shareware.

u

WHODATHUNKIT? (Summer gardening leave special) Ants are inexplicably reluctant to cross a white line.

u

JAMES NAUGHTIE, the feisty Radio 4 broadcaster who encourages politicians to wake up and smell the coffee, caused a stir among his fellow judges for the Samuel Johnson Non-Fiction prize. Cherie Blair, The Independent on Sunday's Kate Summerscale, and Stuart Proffitt, the publisher who organised the pounds 30,000 jackpot, became concerned when e-mail stopped coming from Naughtie, the panel's chairman. Voicejail hell ensued. As deadlines loomed, enquiring minds began to wonder whether this was a case of naughty Naughtie? Increasingly frenetic faxes and calls finally revealed the 192: his kids' rabbit had munched its way through the Naughtie modem wire...

u

CERYS MATTHEWS (pictured) sings: "Every day when I wake up, I thank the Lord I'm Welsh", on Catatonia's hit disc International Velvet. Lord Elis-Thomas, formerly a PC MP, now has his own version: "Every day when I wake up, I thank the Welsh I'm a lord."

u

TRESS FOR SUCCESS. That's the message for Tony Toni Tone in July's Harpers & Queen. It notes that whenever No 1 Guy hits turbulence, his hair goes ape in one of three ways - the Liberace Aureole (vertically teased pompadour curls); the Mephisto Peak (Question Time, definitely) or the Cadbury Swirl (left hair meets right hair to create tonsorial storm). The HQ solution? "Tony should follow the example of the Princess Royal: settle for a simple, no-nonsense hairstyle that conceals nothing." Quite.

u

SMOKE SIGNALS say the next brands heading for the big ashtray in the sky are Merit, L&M and Kent.

u

BE AFRAID. Be very afraid. The new Punch contends that David Montgomery has Express Newspapers in his crosshairs. Given that Punch is Mohamed Al Fayed's plaything, and that the Harrods boss has a relationship with the Barclay Bros - named in the story as the source of Montgomery's war chest for any putative bid - this sounds like a definite maybe. If the story proves to be true, expect Express Newspapers to become the destination of the nation's sympathy cards. Many of its players have already tasted Monty's "slash and burn" management techniques at first hand - right here at Canary Wharf, where the dour Orange was shown the door after a series of hideous fiascos. The stampede for the exits starts here...

u

THIS SAYS heaps about WonkWorld and perhaps SW1 residents. One of this season's fastest-moving items from the shelves of Politicos, the Westminster shop favoured by MPs and kindred political animals, is a mug. It's emblazoned with this week's Phrase That Pays: "Dip Me In Honey and Throw Me to the Lesbians."

Contact Pandora by e-mail: pandora@independent.co.uk

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