Captain Moonlight

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The Independent Online
COME with me now to The Rodin, a Westminster eaterie favoured for minglings of the press and politicians and BBC producers, all marble, atrium and EU cuisine (harmonised, indistinguishable). At one table, several hacks and Gordon Brown's new spin doctor, Charlie Whelan, formerly of the engineering union, and formerly the wearer of a gold stud in his left ear until, according to reports, detached from it on grounds of gravitas by Grim Gordon. After about 10 minutes, Whelan asked one of his fellow diners, a silent fellow, who he was. 'I am the editor of the Times,' replied Peter Stothard. Whelan's ignorance is, of course, entirely forgivable: Stothard is as anonymous as one of his leaders. This must be handy for picking up unguarded comments but hardly follows tradition. Captain's advice: try wearing one of those sticky labels on your lapel, Peter.