Boris Johnson has a theory about that famous appearance by the Prime Minister on the David Letterman talk show, when he appeared not to know the meaning of Magna Carta. It did seem an odd omission for someone educated at Eton, where pupils get a solid grounding in classics. Some people thought that David Cameron might have had a mental blank in the pressure of the moment, but the Mayor thinks it was simulated ignorance.
“I think he was only pretending. I think he knew full well what Magna Carta means. It was a brilliant move in order to show his demotic credentials and that he didn’t have Latin bursting out of every orifice,” Johnson told LBC yesterday.
The Mayor, below, has never been bashful about his education, which is just as well for him because in the same interview he showed an unusual lack of knowledge about football. Challenged to name the player who scored a hat trick in the 1966 World Cup final, Boris replied: “Bobby Moore.” Moore, of course, led the team but Geoff Hurst scored the goal that evoked the famous line – “They think it’s all over: it is now!”
“I was only two!” the Mayor exclaimed, in his own defence.
Royal South Sea rumpus is no joke
The royal rumpus that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge accidentally set off in the Solomon Islands is threatening to blow up into a diplomatic row between Pacific neighbours.
The royal couple turned up to a state dinner dressed in clothes made by Ellena Tavioni, below, a fashion designer living and working on the Cook Islands, when William was supposed to be in a specially tailored Solomon Islands shirt, and Kate should have been in a summer dress. People on the Solomon Islands have now taken grave offence over a mocking cartoon published in a Cook Islands newspaper. It depicts a bare-breasted woman in a skimpy hula skirt, doing a “Solomon war dance” above a caption saying: “She’s upset Kate chose a Tavs dress over her stink T-shirt.” A senior Solomon government official has told the Solomon Times that “the decision to print the cartoon was a poor choice.”
Austerity? You’ve never had it so good
You may have thought these are austere times, but far from it – according to that inimitable Tory MP Douglas Carswell, left. “There has been no austerity at all,” he told the website, London Loves Business. “George Osborne has talked about austerity, what austerity? In the second and third quarter of this year, the deficit has gone up by 20 per cent. We’re due to reduce it by 5 per cent this year, that figure is for the birds! They just don’t get it.”
Council cries ‘foul’ over town crier
Ex-firefighter Kevin Griffiths looked resplendent in his three-pointed black hat, red cape, and silver chain of office, as he rang his bell in the market place in Skipton, Yorkshire, where he has served as town crier since 2006. But now his term of office threatens to come to a premature end. Skipton Town Council says it has been “in receipt of numerous complaints, over a lengthy period of time” about him, and has sacked him, for “a failure to follow the rules of membership of the Ancient and Honourable Guild of Town Criers”. The underlying issue is reportedly that Mr Griffiths has been town crying on the town centre car park, greeting visitors who arrive by coach and directing them to where they can get refreshments, despite a bylaw banning commercial activity. But, according to the Yorkshire Post, he was guilty of something worse. Allegedly, he called a councillor an “idiot” – and probably not quietly either, given the nature of his job. Mr Griffiths has told the Craven Herald he is determined to carry on crying