The Feral Beast: No upgrade for Liddle

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The Independent Online

Is Rod Liddle angling for Richard Littlejohn's job on the Mail? His predictably provocative column in the Sunday Times reached new levels of offensiveness last week when he fired off a bullying rant against air hostesses.

Apparently they are all "blankly obstructive, spiteful, and very, very stupid". Must have been a different kind of cabin crew Rod was thinking of when writing a piece about Dubai last year: "All that sex," he slavered, "a city containing 8,000 air hostesses can't be bad."

'Mail' at odds over Tesco

The Daily Mail is holding a literary lunch sponsored by Tesco, for readers willing to shell out £65 to meet novelists Peter James and Barbara Taylor Bradford (right). At that price, the good news is Tesco is not serving the food, but the Mail does not stint in its thanks for its support, informing us it is "Britain's biggest and best supermarket bookseller". That's not quite the view of Mail columnist Martin Samuel: only last week he attacked the supermarket for "actively driving individual shopkeepers from the high street". See you at lunch then Martin?

Mullin's mystery letter

Former Labour MP Chris Mullin was disgusted by a Daily Telegraph story which questioned how much Tony Blair would actually donate to the British Legion. So incensed is Mullin that he wrote to the paper's letters page, but it has mysteriously yet to be published. Why so? "It's news to me," sniffs the letters editor when I call, "I haven't seen any letter. Perhaps he hasn't sent it to the right address. We've moved to Victoria you know. I'll certainly look out for it."

The dog that goes tweet

Having already thrown out the chintz and some of its dustier staff members, Rachel Johnson is bravely thrusting The Lady magazine into the digital age. Star columnist Coco the office dog has begun tweeting. "Coco is the bark of reason in the bonkers blogosphere," she pants – Rachel that is, not Coco, who was too busy to come to the phone. "I predict she will gain a devoted audience of thousands."

DS scoops novel Hamlet

Nintendo has high ambitions for its clientele of teenage zombies, and has launched a "100 books collection" of great works of literature, for its DS console. All very noble. A pity then that whoever wrote the advert got a bit muddled and tells us the list includes "must-read novels" such as Moby Dick, Jane Eyre and, er, Hamlet.

A sub's revenge

A play called Subs at London's Cock Tavern, about the subs at a mag called Gentlemen Prefer..., has sparked a bit of a ding dong between its author and, you guessed it, a sub. Playwright R J Purdey wrote a touchy defence of his play after Time Out ran a lukewarm review by its chief sub, Chris Bourn. Now Bourn says he did like the play after all, though he probably wouldn't have liked it so much had he not been a sub. That'll go down well; tin hats at the ready.