Coming Up: From April fools to Spiceworld ... a quirky look at the week ahead

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Indy Lifestyle Online
Mind the spaghetti

On Wednesday, budding Jeremy Beadles will be grinning from ear to ear: it's 1 April. The BBC, with its history of fooling listeners and viewers, is the one to watch out for. Richard Dimbleby's 1957 introduction of a film purporting to show spaghetti growing on trees in Switzerland is probably the most celebrated April fool. In 1995 Radio 4's Today programme duped listeners with a ruse about a water diviner in a Devonshire village who could predict the winning lottery numbers.

Mad dog

Also on Wednesday, political pooches will be strutting their stuff in Westminster - but the Westminster Dog of the Year competition is no fool. For the likes of Herbie, a miniature wire haired dachshund, it is serious business. Owned by Ian Taylor, MP for Esher and Walton, Herbie was a contender last year but lost out in the final round to Vom, a Collie-cross owned by former Treasury minister Phillip Oppenheim. Herbie was most affronted at not winning and had to be coaxed into entering again but this year he is considered a hot tip. The favourite for this week's competition is the impressive Irish Wolfhound which can be seen taking Helen Southworth, Labour MP for Warrington South, for walks in St James Park. Findbharr, or Fin, weighs in at a massive 10 stone and is 33 inches at the shoulder. He should be have little problem seeing off Buster, the Staffordshire bull terrier owned by Roy Hattersley, which attacked a greylag goose in the same London park.

Own goals

There's no messing with football agent Rachel Anderson, either, when it comes to negotiating the fees for the players she represents, but there may be some foolish expressions at the HQ of the Professional Footballers Association. There will be three notable absences from the annual PFA awards on Sunday: the aforementioned Ms Anderson, Sports Minister Tony Banks and Football Association chief Graham Kelly. The PFA have told Ms Anderson she cannot attend because the event is "men only", so Mr Banks and Mr Kelly are boycotting the Grosvenor House Hotel bash in protest. For the record, David Beckham of Manchester Utd and Michael Owen of Liverpool are tipped to win the Players' Player of the Year and the Young Player of the Year respectively.

Scotty Spice

It's a good week for David Beckham's beloved, Posh Spice - Victoria Adams, as well. The Spice Girls kick off the UK leg of their Spiceworld tour in Glasgow on Saturday. Their first tour has already taken them from Zurich to Dortmund but back in Britain their latest tune is languishing at number four in the charts - "Stop" was the first Spice single not to go straight in at number one. But with all the UK dates sold out within hours of going on sale, and each Spice expecting to make pounds 5m from the 30 nation tour, things can't be that bad.

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