Jo Brand's week

Share
It seems that gangs of Greek Cypriots are making vicious and unprovoked attacks on off-duty British troops who are serving with the United Nations in Nicosia. This is thought to be happening because of the case involving the three soldiers who were sentenced to life following the killing of a young Danish woman. Reaction to these attacks by the Army appears to be a mixture of surprise and concern.

It isn't a surprise to me, it's quite understandable and it may well be time for senior figures in the British Army to admit that many young soldiers are out of control. I accept that many young blokes in the army are lawful, well-behaved individuals, but that's not the point. The point is that an institution like the Army cannot afford to ignore the behaviour of a handful of psychopaths who have led them to acquire such a thuggish image. Perhaps if the people of Cyprus felt the upper echelons weren't turning a blind eye, things would be better. A bit of positive PR wouldn't go amiss. Obviously, it's a bit of a frightening thought having soldiers doing shopping for old ladies or a spot of babysitting, but permitting soldiers to behave like drunken morons when they're off-duty ain't going to endear them to the locals.

It looks as if Tufty is in danger of being squashed under the wheels of progress. Plans are afoot to kill off this road-safety squirrel and replace him with a slightly more hip representative. The director of the Royal Society for the Prevention Of Accidents, Dave Fenemore, thinks that Tufty lacks credibility with the kids, because he is too puritanical and goody-goody. Yep, that figures ... the church seems to be having the same problem.

Tufty's replacement will be a boy called Willy who sports a baseball cap and is accompanied by a dragon called Watchit. Apparently, faith has been lost in small animals teaching road safety, given that a hedgehog is part of Tufty's entourage and as we know they are not the most skilled creatures at crossing the road.

I think a lot of fun could be had with future slogans, "Don't run over a Willy," I fear, is a message that many five-year-old feminists may well ignore.

What a shame that an event as genteel and respectable as the Chelsea Flower Show spawns the petty jealousies and resentments normally reserved for less grand occasions. But the gardeners are not happy and cannot bring themselves to congratulate the winner of the best garden award. Apparently, only those gardeners who are sponsored by the posh nobs ever seem to win the prizes. The losers have even considered asking a gang of Joe Publics to follow the judges round next year and give their own verdict on the gardens. Whatever happened to flower power?

What a joy it must have been for Dennis Skinner to discover that children in Jamaica are saving their money to send to children at a school in Derbyshire to buy pencils. Even better perhaps, that some schools in Derbyshire use local firms to sponsor toilet paper in schools. The Labour left must have relished the opportunity to accuse the Government of scrimping on education to such an extent that parts of a child's education are being sponsored by a Third World country.

In these cases, I like to stop reading and try to work out what the Government's response is going to be ... because there always is one. Predictably, it would accuse the education authority (Labour, of course) of spending its money on pointless exercises such as creating nuclear-free zones. This sounds rather hollow. Perhaps Jamaican children could save a bit more and sort out the dreadful state of repair of our schools.

Libraries in Glasgow have had their budget cut by 15 per cent, thus forcing the tragic decision that no more Mills and Boon novels (if you can call them that) will be bought in. I wonder how they came to this decision.

Well, I imagine some granite-jawed hero with smoky grey eyes forcefully made his case, as he pounded his fist on the table and his chest rose and fell in a very manly way. On the other hand, one should spare a thought for the women whose lives are going to be left empty and desolate by the absence of heros like this.

Julia Ormond, the near-perfect looking actress, who played Guinevere in the recent Connery/Gere bash, First Knight, has been bemoaning the fact that she cannot find her ideal man. It is always distressing for us lower mortals who look like we've just got up ... all day ... to discover that a flower as delightful as Julia with the pick of the crop at her feet is having problems in the search for a partner. If she cannot find the ideal man with her assets, it leads one sadly to the conclusion that he does not exist.

Still, what would I know, man-hating feminist that I am?

React Now

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

Recruitment Genius: Administrator

£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has a track record...

Recruitment Genius: Solar Field Sales Executive

£40000 - £70000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Relations Officer

£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: IT Help Desk Support

£14500 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An IT Help Desk Support individ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Craig Oliver, David Cameron’s Director of Communications  

i Editor's Letter: Poultry excuses from chicken spin doctors

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
Women come back from the fields to sell vegetables at a market in Bangui, Central African Republic  

International Women's Day: Africa's women need to believe in themselves and start leading the way

Sylvia Bongo Ondimba
Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable