THE FRIARY NEWSLETTER; Meet Eddie Windsor and the Earl of Wessex

'Edward's condition is rare but incurable; he is suffering from Not-Working-Title syndrome'

Share
Related Topics
This week, Sir Giles Bartleby, consultant neurologist and chief executive of The Friary, writes:

ACCORDING TO a gossip item in the national press, someone is planning to make a film about our legendary clinic! Obviously we are all very chuffed by the news. When you've been at the cutting edge of Trendy Addiction Management and Celebrity Burnout Reversal as long as we have, you feel a glow of pride at seeing your professional success commemorated on celluloid there in front of you. The slow tracking shots down our noble corridors... Some muted Elgar to accompany a respectful prowl around the founder's statues... The fawning interview with myself - "But tell me, Sir Giles, do you feel a knighthood is really enough recognition of your historic contrib..."

What? You mean it's a feature film? A made-up, fictional, off-the-top- of-Richard-Curtis's-head sort of film? Oh no. Oh dear. I foresee nothing but trouble. Can you imagine, for one thing, the gaggle of patients from the Patti LuPone Lookalikes/ Tragic Movie Has-Beens In Horrible Make-Up ward, all squawking and flapping around the production team, shouting "Ready for my close-up now, Mr De Mille"?

And as for the plot, well, I could practically write that myself. Let me guess. World-famous actress Lottie Trott (Catherine Zeta-Jones), following unhappy fling with Enrico the loveable waiter at St Martin's Hotel (Antonio Banderas) hits the bottle, Skid Row, Needle Park etc and becomes addicted to cocktails and tranquillisers. Discovered in a coma one morning after disastrously confusing Temazepam and Tabasco, is sent to world-famous Friary for treatment. (Elgar music over shot of rolling lawns? Hitchcock- style-walk-on shot of me? Or not?) During gruelling first week (make-up: black circles round eyes, hair drenched in Vaseline) meets Clive, floppy- haired wise-cracking public schoolboy ( I can't think who - Martin Clunes? Boris Johnson?) going through 120-step programme to cure Completely Fake Stammer Affectation. They fall in love, but cannot leave to start a new life together because evil Sister Josephine, in charge of the Eating Disorders Carvery, wants Clive for herself...

Perhaps I could enlist Prince Edward's help? I'm sure I could rely on him to see things were kept tasteful. And he could do with the commission. Poor boy. Since he arrived here on Friday, we've hardly seen him. He keeps to his private room in our glamorous but not-much-used Chronically Inept Royal Pipsqueak Ward, talking to his shadow on the wall, to newsreaders on television, to the orderlies who bring him his lunch off the "Sandringham Sandwiches" menu.

"Would you like to be in my next movie?" he asks them all. "It's a complete departure from my other stuff. It's called My Favourite Moat and stars, well, me obviously, and lots of talented pieces of wood as drawbridges and there's a scene where lots of really, you know, horrid journalists fall into this disgusting green slime..."

Poor boy. It can't be easy, living with his condition. It's a form of schizophrenia. One half of the brain says: "Course, I'm not royal, not really, I'm an individual, an artist, a dreamer, a showbiz impresario, Eddie Windsor doesn't need all that royal tat, no way!" The other half says: "How dare you presume to criticise me or my business dealings, you uncouth little man? Have you any idea who I am? Do you realise that, as well as being plain, straight-talking Eddie Windsor, I am also the Nawab of Peshwari, the Sultana of Nutt, the Baron of Bismuth?"

But no one will respect him for being royal or admire him for not being royal. Hence his condition. It's thankfully rare but incurable. Edward is suffering from Not-Working-Title Syndrome.

There's just time to welcome Frank Skinner to the day-room, where he has been amusing the long-stay patients with his droll antics. We think you're wonderful, Frank. We're sorry you haven't copped a share of $5.5m like David Baddiel, or a million quid Sky deal like Harry Enfield. But you must understand that sitting in an armchair and raising your eyebrows charmingly at an audience does not entitle you to pounds 20m. You haven't earned it yet. So we're putting you in the Chris Evans Wing for people with a farcically inflated sense of their own worth, and hope you'll be happy. And who knows? If you hit it off with the Earl of Wessex, we could have a new Morecambe and Wise on our hands...

React Now

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

Recruitment Genius: Account Manager

£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This full service social media ...

Recruitment Genius: Data Analyst - Online Marketing

£24000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are 'Changemakers in retail'...

Austen Lloyd: Senior Residential Conveyancer

Very Competitive: Austen Lloyd: Senior Conveyancer - South West We are see...

Austen Lloyd: Residential / Commercial Property Solicitor

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: DORSET MARKET TOWN - SENIOR PROPERTY SOLICITOR...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Tony Abbott: A man most Australian women would like to pat on the back...iron in hand

Caroline Garnar
Australian rapper Iggy Azalea performs in California  

Hip hop is both racial and political, and for Iggy Azalea to suggest otherwise is insulting

Yomi Adegoke
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there