Pandora: Bigmouth strikes again: Hannan's back!

Time for the latest instalment in the rolling cyber-drama of Daniel Hannan, the Tory Party's very own YouTube hero (or burden, depending on how you see things).

Pandora readers will already be familiar with the erratic MEP's adventures, first as flamboyant lambaster of the PM, and then as vociferous champion of the NHS's demise. Now, fresh from his success addressing the party's spring conference, Hannan has returned with another attention-grabbing sound bite, this time delivered via his blog: "There are two Lefties who follow this keenly," he writes of Fabian General Secretary Sunder Katwala and Liberal Conspiracy's Sunny Hundal. "They are called, confusingly, Sunder and Sunny. As with Ant and Dec, I've never been entirely clear which is which." Understandably, Katwala is feeling less-than-amused by the comment, which he claims reveals more than a little tacit prejudice from Hannan. "As far as I can tell the humour depends on a 'don't these chaps have funny names' piece of side-splitting hilarity," he observes. "Or may be a nostalgic attempt to revive the sadly neglected 'why is it so hard to tell Asian people apart' humour."

Sadly, Hannan wasn't available to clarify which one it was, though Pandora doubts this will be the last we hear of him and his eccentric ways.

Tara shares her naked ambition

"It's sexy, filthy and dirty all in one. If I had bigger boobs, I'd do it." Jodie Marsh on Katie Price's marathon? Er, no: Tara Palmer-Tomkinson discussing naked painting at London's Sketch Gallery. She invited Meredith Ostrom to perform – involving coating herself in paint and rolling on a canvas – before an audience (including, curiously, Michael Portillo). "I said to her, 'you have a talent, you need to get it out there," explains TP-T. "Not many people can say they have tits and arse on their wall, can they?'"

Balls' (possibly) comic turn

"The best-ever treasury story," now, as told by an excited Ed Balls to the Young Labour Conference on Monday evening. After six years' worth of service, Balls' practical joker of a secretary revealed – you'll never believe this, honest – that throughout her entire tenure, she – wait for it – had been skimping on mineral water by refilling the bottles in Balls' office with tap water. Hilarious!

"And I never knew the difference," guffawed the Schools Secretary, to the bemused silence of the audience. Who knew he was such a comedian?

Knowles plays the sympathy card

Prepare your hearts to bleed for Nick Knowles, the BBC presenter paid a reported £1 million a year for his work. Apparently, it's a tougher gig that it looks. "It's so unfair, I work so hard, I only have three days off a month if that," he pleads. "Jonathan Ross and I are quite similar – if we pull in millions of viewers then the BBC are making a profit so we're worth it. I'm the only person with such a flexible contract at the BBC – it includes drama, documentaries and script writing. I've already written seven dramas and intend to write more." Happily, it's not all bad news for Nick: we're told that he managed to "quietly" renew his contract a couple of months ago.

City Hall puts us back in the loop

At last! Boris Johnson has offered his verdict on In The Loop (much to Pandora's dismay, the Mayor's office had previously declined to comment after we spotted him popping in to watch it at an Islington cinema ). "There is a charge that is made against the Labour government, that they politicised the upper echelons of the civil service," reflects Johnson. "That charge is overdone. Even in In the Loop, they are not compromised. New Labour has not destroyed the ethic of impartial service." Mmm. About an eight out of 10, then?

pandora@independent.co.uk

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
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

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...

Recruitment Genius: Project Engineer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This privately-owned company designs and manuf...

Recruitment Genius: Human Resources Officer

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity has arisen at th...

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders