Jo Brand's week: Diary

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Maybe all the Royals would like to donate their clothing allowances to the people of the island of Eigg in the Inner Hebrides, who are trying to buy their island to avoid a series of rich, eccentric types mincing up and down like they own the place, which of course they do. The asking price is roughly 2 million quid, which if you think of it isn't that much ... about as far up as Shearer's knee. Eigg is currently owned by some reclusive German arty type and maybe it's about time the islanders were responsible for their own destiny. Perhaps some millionaire type will buy it and give it to them, as these people do pop up out of the woodwork from time to time. Paul McCartney could afford it, I expect. What a shame the band KLF burnt a million pounds on Jura recently. If only the Eigg mob had legged it down there before they put a match to it, that would have been half the price sorted.

The Eastenders kiss suffered the unkindest cut of all as one and a half seconds of it out of two seconds slid onto the cutting room floor. I didn't see it. Must remember to catch the omnibus edition. Women have been snogging on the box for quite some time now in soap operas, but because that is the stuff of many a pubescent male fantasy, it was greeted with a Phwoah! as opposed to the outraged queasiness announcing two blokes at it. There is still a fair amount of homophobia in this country and so one would expect that lot not to take it lying down. I have always been surprised by the paranoia of homophobic men whose battle cry of "Backs against the wall!" belies the fact that most self-respecting gays would not dream of placing any of their appendages anywhere near any of the orifices of these hairy neanderthals. The two kissers in Eastenders, it has to be said, are reasonably attractive, which softens the blow. Not until we have witnessed the improbable sight of Garry Bushell with his tongue down Eric Hall's throat could we truly say we have accepted homosexuality lock, stock and barrel.

Nice to hear the Tories are out of the red for the first time in 10 years. Nearly 16 million quid overdrawn last year, the party has pulled itself up because of an increase in donations, some pounds 18m this year. This is apparently because of the run-up to the election and the Tories are now on a war footing.

Sounds to me like the people with the dosh are getting scared that they won't hang on to it for too much longer, despite the fact that Tony Blair has said he's not going to grab it from them. Still, we're always told by John Major that throwing money at a problem is not going to solve anything. Let's hope in this case he's right.

The charity for the homeless, St Mungo's, said recently that the number of people sleeping rough on the streets in London was affecting the tourist trade. Well perhaps this will get the Government off their arses, as nothing else until now has seemed to make any difference. Many people have weighed in with their opinions on this problem, including Trevor Nunn, the future artistic director of the Royal National Theatre, who very helpfully points out that some areas are so "repellent" that "no one of sound mind would pay money in search of entertainment there". Poetic, but not much help, Trev. However, it is the London Tourist Board who come up with the most outrageous comments by saying they are concerned that many homeless people are put in bed and breakfast accommodation when the capital has such a severe shortage of cheap hotels suitable for tourists. (You what?) Expect homeless firing squads from the LTB soon.

Having worked in children's homes and as a psychiatric nurse, I have been called upon on several occasions to deal with out-of-control teenagers and also to separate babies from their mothers when the child was felt to be at risk. On none of these occasions did I or others present feel the need to use CS gas. The fact is, if you've got it, you'll use it before you consider the less dramatic options. I thought it was for hulking great brutes uncontrollable by any other means. Silly me.

It seems the Royals are spending a rather large proportion of their allowances, when jetting off on trips abroad, on their clothes. This has not really occurred to anyone until recently, probably because with few exceptions the whole bunch of them don't look as though they've made a great deal of effort in the glad rags department. You may think, considering the fact that I tend to dress in the "Scruffy Bat At Fat Ladies' Shop" style, that I have no right to comment, but my clothes are not paid for by the taxpayer and I don't represent the country, thank Gawd. If the Royals are going to spend all this money on looking the business for foreign trips, the women could at least make the effort not to look like sacks of spuds covered in Dayglo Crimplene and the men could eschew the recently released offender style. And considering many of the Queen's outfits looked like she's knocked them up on a Singer in an evening, she might like to save a bit by getting a couple of dress patterns in and having a go herself.

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