Where are they now? A special report

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Has it ever occurred to you there are people who are household names one day and half forgotten the next?

Has it ever occurred to you there are people who are household names one day and half forgotten the next?

People like Angus Deayton? Or Tony Slattery? Or John Birt? Or Tiggy Legge-Bourke?

One day they were topical, current and hot.

Then they were vague echoes in your memory.

So that sometimes you think: "I wonder what John Birt is up to now? What little tax arrangements has he made for what new activity? And wherever he is, I wonder if anyone can understand his Birtian jargon?"

Well, of course, that's not true. Nobody wonders what John Birt is up to. But there are many others who had their 15 minutes of fame, of whom you sometimes ask: Where Are They Now? Today we answer that question.

Lord Hutton

Lord Hutton is giving Lord Butler a series of tutorials in the art of writing a report. He is teaching him it is vital to a) write a report so long that no one ever gets the gist of it; b) not blame anyone in the government; c) not answer any of the questions people really want answered; d) wear a wig the whole time so nobody will recognise you afterwards.

Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson is undergoing plastic surgery to become a black person.

Saddam Hussein

Saddam Hussein has been signed up by the promoter who organised one-man shows by Alastair Campbell and Tony Benn, and is shortly going on the road to do a lecture called "Between Iraq and a Hard Place".

Andrew Gilligan

Andrew Gilligan is working as a fact-checker on the autobiography that Greg Dyke is currently writing.

Osama bin Laden

Osama bin Laden is doing a pilot for a new TV makeover programme which shows people how they can take their boring, dowdy old cave and turn it into somewhere bright and cheerful to live.

Al Gore

In a parallel universe, Al Gore is President of the United States, having got more votes than George Bush, as indeed he did in this universe. President Gore is due for re-election, and is standing on a wildly popular platform of having successfully invaded both Canada and France.

The Pope

Who knows what the Pope is up to now? Nobody, including the Pope.

Jonathan Aitken

Jonathan Aitken has joined the Salvation Army and is playing the trombone in a small band in North London.

Jeffrey Archer

Jeffrey Archer has heard about this and is writing a blockbusting novel based on a politician who falls from grace and ends up playing the trombone in a Salvation Army band in South London.

Andrew Lloyd Webber

Andrew Lloyd Webber has heard about this and is writing a blockbuster new musical about a politician who falls from grace and ends up playing the trombone in a Salvation Army Band in, oh, I don't know, not Peckham, that would never get the punters in; how about New York?

Ben Elton

Ben Elton has heard about this and keeps writing to Andrew Lloyd Webber to find out why he hasn't asked him to write the book for the new musical about the politician etc etc.

George Galloway

George Galloway is on the run in the Iraqi desert, disguised as the Sheikh of Araby. Every time the coalition forces think they have got him, he evades capture in a brilliant manoeuvre which makes the Yanks realise they are up against a mastermind.

(Lawyer's note: We wish to make it plain that the foregoing item on George Galloway is a joke, and in no way does Mr Kington intend to suggest George Galloway has ever done anything he shouldn't have. Ever.)

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