Diary: Beyoncé the first? Not quite

In a move destined to feature in a 2012 edition of the Daily Mail alongside complaints about the number of BBC employees dispatched to Glastonbury, Zane Lowe shockingly failed to watch (let alone gush dutifully about) Beyoncé's performance on Sunday evening. Yet more disgraceful, depending on which random selection of unnecessarily irate tweeters one believes, was Jo Whiley's wildly misguided onscreen assertion that Beyoncé was "the first female in a quarter of a century to headline the Pyramid stage". In fact, pedants suggest, Suzanne Vega had the honour in 1989 (that's 22 years ago), followed by Shakespeare's Sister, Sinéad O'Connor and half of The White Stripes. 400 staff and they couldn't send a fact-checker?

* Last week this column carried news of alleged babydaddy's Boris Johnson's plan to woo wealthy donors to his 2012 mayoral election campaign. For the clangingly appropriate sum of £2,012, rich people can join the Mayor's own private members club, "Club 305", which is due to convene for the first time in Kensington next month, when its expected 305 members will doubtless be invited to contribute further to Boris's cause. Let it not be said, however, that access to City Hall is available merely to the champagne-quaffing, canapé-scoffing classes. No; humble, salt-of-the-earth supporters also have the opportunity to mingle with the Mayor. All you have to do, it turns out, is give a meagre £12 to his campaign, and five randomly selected donors will get the chance to meet Boris and "personally share their priorities for London". Democracy in action!

* Tony Blair has selected nine of his favourite books for the new literary magazine We Love This Book. The former Prime Minister's choices include Lord of the Rings, because, "it has its share of wizards who become collaborators [??], good people who fall from grace, and those who are in some sense redeemed". More pertinent, perhaps, is his inclusion of The Prophet: not, I'm afraid, the spiritual self-help book by Kahlil Gibran (though I expect Cherie owns a copy), but Isaac Deutscher's three-volume biography of Leon Trotsky – which, Blair claims, was "the first political book I read and one that got me interested in politics." Strange, then, that neither Deutscher nor Trotsky merit so much as a mention in Blair's own spiritual self-help book, A Journey.

* When I last heard from Crispin Mount – recycling sceptic, scourge of south-western Tories, proud leader of 40 Twitter followers and this column's amateur Cotswolds correspondent – it was with dubious news of CCTV blackouts in Cirencester. Today the doughty Crispin returns to resecure his unpaid position with a scoop, of sorts. The Prime Minister was caught trying to persuade backbenchers to vote against a ban on wild circus animals last week, and Crispin claims to know why. "Last July," he writes, "my lady wife Evadne and I attended a wonderful evening of entertainment from Giffords Circus, when they visited Great Barrington, which is a stone's throw from the PM's constituency. In a small tent the great and the good converge – all of Canary Wharf invades at weekends – to watch horses, ponies, dogs and wild ducklings in a modern troubador experience. We knew something was up that evening when security heavies descended on an empty seat, parting finally to reveal Dave himself, an avid punter." As far as I know, so-called "wild" ducklings are not covered by the aforementioned ban, but I get his point.

* Finally, may I be the first to offer my congratulations to Simon Kelner, editor-in-chief of The Independent and i, who has been named Hirsute Personality of the Year 2011 ("The individual who has done the most to promote a positive image of the hirsute during the year") by the Beard Liberation Front. Mr Kelner, or "Simon", impressed judges as the only long-term beard-sporting editor of a national newspaper, and for "adding gravitas to the national debate with the launch of the i paper". He secured the title, which is bestowed as part of the BLF's annual Beard Week, ahead of topical runners-up Andy Murray and Michael Eavis. Claims that awarding the honour to a newspaper editor is simply a shameless ploy to earn publicity for the BLF are not entirely unfounded.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: HR Manager

£36000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Ashdown Group: HR Manager Shared Services - Uxbridge, - 1 Year contract

£50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager Shared Services - Uxbridge, Stock...

Recruitment Genius: Graduate Human Resource Officer and Executive Assistant

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join one of...

Ashdown Group: HR Assistant (Events business) - Central Manchester - £20K

£18000 - £20000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Assistant (Events busi...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before