Nevin's Notes (29/04/10)

An alternative take on the election
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The Independent Online

Bigot latest

Sometimes, under the stress of the moment, in the middle of a gruelling campaign, in an unguarded moment, journalists can, unforgivably, fail to take things seriously enough.

Thus, as all eyes were trained on Mrs Duffy's white front door in Rochdale, with the Prime Minister inside and the minutes ticking by, a voice was heard to say: "He's probably promising her a Polish cleaner." I also have some less bad news for Mr Brown: as far as I can discover, there is only one person called Bigot in the country, no roads and only one village – Marston Bigot, in Somerset – which is pretty small.


The bad news for the Tories is that the chickens are multiplying. A hot source from the Daily Mirror, whence they issue, confirmed yesterday that there are no fewer than three of the fowls ranging free around the country, ready to cross the road and clutch any opportunity to confront top Tories. Ken Clarke was caught on Tuesday, while lunching al fresco on what looked like a highly relevant toasted sandwich. Rumour and counter-rumour fly. The Tories are suspected of laying a false trail the same day, luring a chicken to Blackpool while Mr Cameron was in fact on his way to Bury. My supreme source emphatically denies this. Let's see who cracks first. Note: What does D Cameron say every time he passes by the unfeathered standard Daily Mirror reporter following him? "Cluck-cluck".

Sod the lot, indeed

Lord Pearson, the leader of the UK Independence Party, has written to a Somerset newspaper group advising its readers to vote Tory in three constituencies, without, apparently, telling his own candidates. This might be the time for further views from his lordship based on a revelation he received while being operated on in 1977 for varicose veins: "I take on the Christians because they believe that God must inevitably win. My instruction was different, that he is not necessarily going to win, as far as this planet is concerned, anyway, and if you look at our planet today it isn't obvious that he is winning." Can't argue with that. Next!

Can it get any worse?

I'm afraid so. I have been investigating a claim that 6 May could be an auspicious day for the Labour Party because it is also the feast of St Prudence. So far, though, I have been able only to establish that 6 May is National Crêpes Suzette Day and National Prayer Day, both of which appear to be confined to the United States. Of St Prudence, I can find no record in the Oxford Dictionary of Saints. Perhaps someone in the Foreign Office can help.