If you ask me...Phew! I live again, dear readers and the editor says I’m better than Pippa Middleton

I can’t tell you for sure what made the editor of this newspaper change his mind. Was it calling him every hour on the hour and sobbing down the phone?

Share

If you ask me... look! I’m still here!

I’ve seen off Ms Pippa Middleton, even though it was a close run thing, and news that she was about to replace me actually made headlines in America – “UK newspaper rolls over for royalty”. I’m thrilled, of course, although I accept it’s not so great for Pippa, as she was looking forward to it, and had already given some tips on column writing to the Press Gazette: “The trick,” she said, “is to start at the beginning with words, and then do more words until you get to the end.” And when she was quizzed on replacing Howard Jacobson, and being wryly Jewish every Saturday, she said she had, in fact, thought a fair amount about Jewish issues over the years, particularly Israel. “If Arabs and Jews focused on what unites them, rather than what divides them, I think they’d find the answer,” she said, “which is falafel.” She then added: “Falafel can be served at parties, although you will need to make them in advance, if they’re to be ready on time.” Also: “Serve with a steady hand, or they may roll off the plate.”

So she was all set to go, and was working on “wry” – it can, she had already decided, make a nice change from brown, white or granary – and I can’t tell you for sure what made the editor of this newspaper change his mind.

Was it my calling him every hour on the hour and sobbing down the phone: “I can start at the top and finish at the end, Christopher!” and “I know where you live!” which finally swung it for me? I don’t know. I can only say that I understand some of you will be bitterly disappointed, having expected Pippa to be here, and discovering it’s still me, with my fat arse which the nation has, understandably, never collectively perved over, and my hair which just won’t do that foxy, glossy, flicky-flicky thing. (Someone once said it looks like I do it with an electric  toothbrush which, alas, has the ring of truth about it.)

How can I make it up to you? I can’t offer a guide to Wimbledon, as Pippa has already covered this for Vanity Fair, and done so definitively. “Leave enough time to get to the tennis,” she advises, otherwise you might “feel in a rush!” However, I can offer you one tip and it is this: unless you are a natural-born half-wit, or have suffered a brain injury, a hallucinogenic drug will prove of assistance should you ever wish to get from the beginning of Pippa’s words to where she finishes, at the end. But remember: take it before you want it to kick in. Yes, do that. It so helps.

Twitter: @deborahross

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Tradewind Recruitment: English Teacher

Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: This post arises as a result of the need to...

Tradewind Recruitment: Class Teacher Required ASAP In Uminster

£120 - £150 per annum: Tradewind Recruitment: I am recruiting on instruction o...

Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Director - London - £70,000

£70000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Controller - Fina...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - Wimbledon, SW London

£24000 - £28000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - Wim...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

I’m not sure I fancy any meal that’s been cooked up by a computer

John Walsh
Labour leader Ed Miliband delivers a speech on his party's plans for the NHS, in Sale, on Tuesday  

Why is Miliband fixating on the NHS when he’d be better off focussing on the wealth gap?

Andreas Whittam Smith
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore