Pandora

"LET US not pry unduly into the lives of our leaders," wrote Dr Adrian Rogers, Director of the Conservative Family Institute, in a letter to another newspaper yesterday. "But we should at least understand that their private lives are of utmost importance to us and are of legitimate public concern." He was referring to Bill Clinton's not-so-private life this time, but Pandora recalls another statement of "public concern" made by Rogers during the last election and his Exeter campaign against the Labour MP Ben Bradshaw. "He's a media man, a homosexual, he likes Europe, he studied German, he lived in Berlin, he rides a bike, he's everything about society which is wrong," said the Tory. So legitimately concerned was the Devon public by these words that Rogers was defeated by a margin of 11,705 votes.

u

AN AUSTRALIAN researcher named David John Oates claims to reveal people's true, unconscious thoughts by replaying their taped speech backwards. On his "Reverse Speech" website yesterday, Oates offers a number of "quotes" obtained by applying his technique to Bill Clinton's Monday confession. These include "I failed you. Guilty not", and "Lusty Monica. You served me enough fuss". Eurt yrev woh, don't you think?

u

ALWAYS THE life of the party, that lovable wag Norman Lamont featured in a lively anecdote told by the journalist Alice Thomson in yesterday's Daily Telegraph. "Our sunbathing conversation on holiday in Italy last weekend revolved around geishas. The former chancellor, Norman Lamont, was the only guest to have met a real one, and did a pouting shuffle round the pool with his towel as a kimono." With a glass of fizz in one hand and a pastel-coloured ciggie in the other, perhaps?

u

THOSE WHO remember their vain battle against "Franglais" slang and how the French held their noses when the first McDonald's opened (now massively popular), will not be surprised by a recent report from the Paris tourist office. Apparently the once-scorned Euro Disney is now the City of Light's number one tourist attraction, outdrawing Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe and even Jim Morrison's grave. However, Pandora must correct an earlier report, based on the former Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek's statement to Rolling Stone magazine, that authorities want to dig up Morrison's grave when its lease expires in 2001. Not so, insist Pere Lachaise cemetery officials. It's an A-list tourist attraction and will never be moved, no matter how much rubbish is strewn around it by adoring fans. We can all rest easier.

u

WILL BABY Spice (Emma Bunton) be the next member of the Girl Power group to go her own way? This week, the American media is full of rumours to this effect. She is particularly taken with Chicago, according to the Daily Star, because it "reminds her of London". It claims she has formed a jolly friendship with the eccentric, cross-dressing, giant basketball player Dennis Rodman, whom she met when their current US tour was in the Windy City. There is even talk of the two planning to make a film together, which sounds to Pandora about as likely as Bill Clinton being invited to have tea with the Queen. Back at the Spice Ranch in London, these rumours of Baby's departure are being treated with appropriate disdain. "They're just desperate to get home," said their PR spokesman.

u

ELSEWHERE ON the rock circuit, David Bowie (left) is said to be unenthusiastic about Velvet Goldmine, the fictional biopic about the Seventies glam rock scene that stars Ewan McGregor and which opened the Edinburgh Film Festival on Sunday. However, Bowie is probably even less pleased by a recent real estate transaction. He has just sold his Beverly Hills condo flat to rap singer Heavy D for $850,000, having bought it in 1990 for $920,000. No goldmine, that.

Comments