The one thing to be said for an election is that it gives you the chance to find someone new to hate. I'm quite looking forward to it. I was thinking of starting with something quite simple - Anthea Turner perhaps - and working my way up to something really challenging, like the National Health Service or a boxful of Labrador retriever puppies. It says a lot that the Tories have even lost their bite as hate objects.
I only wish someone would tell the pollsters. A day doesn't go by without the phone ringing with requests for my random opinion. The best came from the highly respected Fax Polling Associates at eight o'clock on Sunday morning. "The Referendum on Europe," announced a tinted header. Below were two boxes marked "Stay in" and "Get out", and a pair of 0331 numbers. "Please make copies of this form for everybody who wishes to express an opinion in your office," it said. Seems the Society for the Promotion of a European Referendum (302 Regent Street, if you want to drop in and ask for a refund on your fax paper), wants to determine the democratic wishes of the British people. Calls to 0331 numbers, by the way, cost pounds 1 per minute. Can't wait for the results when they publish them "as widely as possible" before the election: "Several thousand complete mugs think we should get out of Europe. And gave us their names and addresses as well."
Gallup were on the phone on Tuesday, wanting to know in whose hands I thought inflation was safest and who I thought would make the best Prime Minister. The option "me" didn't seem to be available. As a conscientious voter, I answered the questions scrupulously, though I think I fell at the first hurdle by not knowing whether SDP has an L in it or not at the moment. But my mind wasn't really on the job. Whigs, you see, have long since been superseded by wigs on my agenda. Wigs have occupied my every waking thought since Sunday. Everywhere I go I see them now: big wigs, small wigs, parietal lobe wigs, wigs that don't match the skin tone, wigs that don't match the real hair.
It's the fault of Mordechai ben David. Thanks to Mord-echai, there was a gathering this week, at Wembley, with more wigs in evidence than at Elton John's birthday party. They bobbed and jiggled, they gorged popcorn and chocolate-flavoured wafer biscuits in the lobby, they watched nervously as their sons broke the strict no-fun rules imposed by the Wembley management and leapt from their seats to dance. And the arresting thing was that, in striking contrast to your average showbiz gathering, the wigs were attached to women. Mordechai ben David, you see, is the King of Hassidic music.
Ant has a bit of a crush on Mordechai, ever since she claims to have heard him sing a song called "Sephardi So Good" on Spectrum Radio. There's nothing like a good pun to get a girl's heart racing. The news that the Great One was coming to the shores of North London sent her up to 60 a day and at least three phone calls an hour. The temptation of an evening's relief from the Hair of Blair was too powerful. We bought the last two tickets on the face of the planet.
Twenty-five pounds well spent. You can keep your salsa: no one can call themselves a true Global Kid until they've bounced around while a man, with a two-foot beard and a dark suit, heels-and-toes beneath a laser show of spectacular garishness. The crowd was is in ecstasies. Polite ecstasies. Being a kid of the punk generation, I have never been at a pop concert before where everyone turned round and said "Excuse me" to the people behind them before they took to their seat. As Mordechai jigged his way to the end of an anthem, a boys' group, decked out in white shirts and dark trousers took it up and carried it on for a full two minutes, Nick Hornby style. "I don't know why," said Mordechai, "people say that London is a quiet town these days." Not everyone, it seems, has a subscription to Vanity Fair.
We rehearsed foot movements all the way across the car park and treated the darkened streets of Willesden to a full- blast taster of the double album. Back down south, we stopped at a 7-Eleven for more nicotine, and a woman with a clipboard approached. "Excuse me," she said, "can I ask you a few questions about how you're going to vote in the election?"
Her hair was nylon red, with rock-hard strands trained over her forehead. Ant settled down to talk about the Tories, while I walked around the back to see if I could spot a seam.Reuse content