Claudia Winkleman: This is goodbye. For a bit

Take It From Me: 'Someone else will have to worry about the credit crunch while I am immersed in the details of John Sergeant's foxtrot'
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The Independent Online

This week I feel a bit like Michael Douglas. Sure, I'll grant you that on first glance I don't have THAT much in common with him.

Number one. He's a man. Well, let's just put that to one side for now.

Number two. He's a gazillionaire and can earn up to $20m a movie. Again, shall we not focus on something as mundane as a couple of bank balances...

Number three. He's a movie star. Ahem.

Number four. He was once treated for sex addiction. Now, let me be totally frank – it's not that I don't like the odd bit of fumbling, but if it's sex or a Crunchie bar, let's just say thank god it's Friday.

Number five. He married a Welsh woman. I married a Danish man. I suppose both countries have a fondness for, uh, fish.

Number six. He's big on Mallorca. I once went to Palma for three days in 2004.

So, so far not so good. I know what you're thinking. But wait... it gets better.

Number seven. He is 5ft 10in. No, of course I'm not 5ft 10in. I still have to stand on a box to post a letter. But he's quite small. Like me.

Number eight. He has won two Oscars. Yes. Yes. Not Oscars. But I have won two robotic championships. This is actually true. Absolutely, they weren't "official" as I was round at my friend's house, but her grandma and her mum AND her dad all voted, so they've got to count for something right? (In case you're fascinated, the first award was for dancing in a stilted "automatic" way all the way through Michael Jackson's "Bad" and the second was for the "Is she actually in a box?" category.)

So, not so dissimilar.

Number nine. He lived with Danny DeVito. I like small actors. They are my absolute favourite. I'd take Tom Hollander over Brad Pitt any day. That's all I'm saying...

Number 10. He is a United Nations Messenger of Peace. I, um, like peace.

Number 11. He shares a birthday with Barbara Walters and Will Smith. I share a birthday with Max Beesley and James Nesbitt. You see? These similarities are coming thick and fast, right?

Alright, fine. We're hardly peas in a pod. However, it's just been announced that he's about to take on the role of Liberace for a movie. He's putting his beige slacks to one side, and his white shirt and navy blazer combo is being placed at the back of the cupboard. We usually see him on the golf course, and he's more often than not in a bottle-green sweater and, very occasionally, a white baseball cap. Well, all of this garb is being placed in a "for three months' time" box by one of his small members of staff. His days of jumping in the Range Rover and having his face lifted up over his ears are about to come to a close.

Instead he's going to have to stain his body a burnt orange colour, he's about to wear more sequins than is scientifically advised, and he's going to throw himself into the world of performance.

Ah. Now we're practically twins. I, too, am off to bury myself in a land of feather boas, skin-tight dresses and mesh tights. His is a major film where he's about to take on the role of Liberace, and I am off to report on Strictly Come Dancing.

There is nothing I won't know about the waltz come December, and while I'm knee deep in St Tropez (the stuff in the bottle, I can't actually leave the country until someone has won the competition), I won't be writing here.

That might come as quite a shock. "Hell, she only has to talk about the Viennese Waltz for half an hour a night, why can't she read the papers and write something too?" is probably what you're thinking. But like Michael, I know that it would be unfair to pretend to know anything about the world other than how to take off a tight-fitting sparkle top (with talc) and how to make your hair immovable (dry shampoo followed by a whole can of Elnett). I will have to let everyone else worry about the credit crunch and, you know, impending wars, while I immerse myself in the details of John Sergeant's foxtrot.

So this is goodbye. For a bit. In the meantime I will leave you with the things I've learnt in the two years of writing this column.

1. Men are tricky.

2. Women can be trickier.

3. David Cameron isn't ready.

4. Victoria Beckham should smile a little bit more.

And 5. When all is said and done, it is never advisable to wear a beret. Even as a joke.

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