News to dispel any lingering doubts about Jamie Oliver's ability to crack the American market: today the Naked Chef is to be awarded the United States' prestigious TED Foundation Award.
Oliver was flying to California last night to collect the gong, which follows his work attempting to reduce the country's obesity levels as part of his series Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution.
The announcement is a singular honour for Oliver, who will be only the third Brit ever to win the award, after the author Karen Armstrong and Cameron Sinclair, the founder of the charity Architecture for Humanity. Other former winners include Bill Clinton and Bono. Intriguingly, in addition to his $100,000 prize money, the chef will be given the chance to make "a wish to change the world", which the foundation then endeavours to put into action.
Oliver's American dream hasn't, it should be said, always looked so rosy. When he first arrived in the US, his anti-obesity efforts were met with fierce resistance from residents of the country's fattest city, Huntington, West Virginia, and his decision to castrate a bull in front of the cameras sparked outrage among animal rights activists.
Two-fingered salute from No 10
Following our inquiry yesterday about the Prime Minister's preferred brand of banana (according to red-top reports, he's been known to consume nine a day in an effort to kick his KitKat habit), Pandora felt obliged to ring No 10 once again, with another pressing query. Given Brown's alleged affection for the chocolate, we wondered, where did he stand on the KitKat chunky vs KitKat regular debate? And was he a two-fingered man, or did it have to be four? Alas, his spokesman declined to say. Shame!
Hoppen hands out a lesson in recycling
Kudos to Kelly Hoppen, who, it seems, has been quietly working to help out the primary schools in her area. We're told the interior designer has recently started donating her old mood boards and sample books to St Mary of the Angels and St Stephen's primary schools in west London.
"It just came about because I'm an environmentalist, among other things," explains Hoppen. "I'm really happy to contribute. I've incorporated lots of practices – double bins for standard refuse, another for bottles and glass or composting, reducer taps and plumbing fittings. We have three paper points where paper printed on one side only is returned to be reused on the other side."
Call me captain: Ferdinand framed
Ping! An email arrives from the National Portrait Gallery. Footballer and former ballet student Rio Ferdinand is to join Lord Nelson and King Charles II as a face for the gallery's new campaign. The decision certainly represents a bit of quick thinking on the part of the gallery's marketing team, coming as it does just days after Ferdinand was announced as England captain. Or does it? Nowhere in the bumf is his new job title mentioned. He is simply referred to as the "England defender". Missed memo?
Selina risks a Stella skewering
"I don't know what was worse, the chickens being squashed or the pigs being crushed," mused fashion designer Selina Blow after a screening of the documentary Food Inc, hosted by her friend Stella McCartney. "It puts you right off meat!" Not for too long, though, it seems: shortly after Blow could be seen slipping off for a quick Lebanese at Mamounia Lounge.
"Well I was starving!" she giggles. "And they had these lovely sizzling lamb skewers outside..." Tsk. Whatever will Stella say?