Vic and Bob's bogus journey

On the road with Ulrika: 'Shooting Stars' conquers Cambridge. Plus, Tony Blair chooses his 'Desert Island Discs'; COMEDY

Television prefers blondes

This week brought yet more reassuring programmes about how we once gave the Germans a good seeing to, but glance around the schedules and you wonder whether the demonic dream of Aryan supremacy didn't come true after all. Television's obsession with anniversaries (happy birthday, Suez Crisis and the Hungarian Uprising) may look unimaginative, but not as much as its soft spot for blondes. They're uber alles.

Meat-eaters make song and dance about pigs' bowels

It was standing room only in the Grand Committee Room of the House of Commons, where the Agriculture and Health select committees were meeting in joint session yesterday. So I went somewhere else.

Diary: Captain Moonlight: Get fit my way ... cucumber slices ... bowled !

HELLO, this is your Captain speaking. Health worries seem rather prevalent at present, don't they? Such a lot to worry about. And it's not just diet, either. Exercise, there's another thing. You may have missed, what with all the other fuss, an announcement by Baroness Cumberlege last week. The Baroness, junior Health minister, changed the government advice on exercise: she said we should be exercising moderately for 30 minutes a day five times a week rather than exercising vigorously for 20 minutes three times a week. Well. What am I supposed to do with my parallel bars and the rope thingies with the rings on now? No more for me the sprint, the springboard and the swallow dive over the wooden horse. Heigh-ho. And moderate exercise? Lady Cumberlege recommends walking the dog, briskly, "heavy" do-it-yourself (such as mixing cement, apparently), and spring- cleaning. She says she herself keeps fit chasing cows on the family farm. (Yes, there is an obvious joke there, but it would be in rather bad taste.) Now, I'm sorry, I believe in doing what the Government tells me as much as the next officer, but my guard dog, Eubank, is battery-operated, I haven't a cow, and I have a large domestic staff to support. As for the cement-mixing, just how many patios does this country need? But I am nothing if not game. So, to help, I have compiled a little list of alternative moderate exercises: 1. When eating, place smaller amounts on fork and spoon. The increased number of lifts will do wonders for arm and shoulder muscle tone (but do remember to alternate hands or you may become lop- sided). 2. Stand up when a lady comes into the room on television. 3. Skip to your car. 4. Instead of just taking the lift, get out and re-enter at a couple of intermediate floors. 5. Use a heavier toothbrush. Any other ideas gratefully received; I will pass them on to Lady Cumberlege.

REAL MEN PREFER BRUNETTES

The only blonds having fun these days are blokes. So, argues Emma Forre st, pour away the peroxide, girls, and show your natural colours There are blondes who have all the components of a classic brunette. Whatever colour her hair is this week, Madonna always seems like a true brunette

how to get a tattoo

Be careful. There are some tattoos you will regret. Recently, a traveller in Bath had "puppy breath" tattooed on to his young son's forehead, matching the "dog breath" already etched on to his own. Perhaps not the inheritance his son would have chosen.

You don't have to be famous to be stalked

You could suffer like Madonna or Princess Anne, says Jean Ritchie

Blonde ambition

They could have been made at the same factory, but they're the highest-paid women in TV. Why, asks Sheryl Garratt

Off the box and off the boil

COMEDY

Television Mondo Rosso / Shooting Stars (BBC2)

Jasper Rees on the rise of schlock

ARTS: underrated the case for Trash TV

When Marcus Plantin, director of the ITV Network Centre, accused BBC1 of being too commercial only a few days after the demise of The Word was announced, proponents of Trash TV began thinking about the purpose of the medium. Only for a moment, of course, but then that's the nature of Trash. Trash TV is essential ephemeral, valueless TV without any redeeming features and with only one intention: entertainment.

Blonde Ambition: This year's crop of debutantes came out at the Queen Charlotte's Birthday Ball on Monday. Emma Forrest polished her social graces and cut along, only to find that she was the right age but the wrong face

The Independent photographer points to the girls he has just photographed for our cover, looks me over and says sternly, 'I'd take your jacket off before you speak to them, if I were you.'

Dear 'Looks' catalogue: Before reconsidering its contract with the pregnant Ulrika Jonsson, the mail-order outfit ought to wake up and realise that these days bulging is beautiful

It seems you're having second thoughts about using the lovely Ulrika Jonsson to model 'tight-fitting clothes' in your next mail order catalogue, just because she's three months pregnant. This is the ex-weather-girl's first baby, and she and her husband are, the Daily Mail says, 'absolutely over the moon'. You should be, too.

The tougher the better for Jean: Ruth Picardie meets Britain's top Gladiator, who is not afraid to take on snarling blonde Amazons or 38-ton lorries

As we walk past Tesco in Rugby, a man in blue overalls interrupts: 'Sorry, but are you . . .?' The woman smiles and nods. 'Could my son have your autograph, please?' he asks. Already a pro, she requests the boy's name and signs the scrappy photograph the man has brought. 'Hang tough] Best wishes, Jean Klenk.'
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