Peter Rhodes on a movie cliche, the future of boozing and how nerve gas has no effect on football

By Peter Rhodes | Peter Rhodes | Published:

Another hero saved

Matt Damon - saved by 'clink!'

"IS drinking becoming as socially unacceptable as smoking?" asks a column in the Guardian. Well, maybe it is among the young. Older folk seem more relaxed. Expecting sunny evenings on the lawn, I bought a half-bottle of gin from our local shop. At the counter an elegantly-dressed lady well into her 80s clocked the Gordon's, smiled wickedly and said: "Yummy. Elevenses."

MY 700-mile round trip to Loch Lomond had only one moment of drama. A lorry driver had piled a load of planks on his truck with the ends resting on top of his cab, while overlooking the laws of aerodynamics. Sure enough, on the M74 near Gorbals, the critical speed was reached, the planks became airborne and crashed into the road to the accompaniment of much swerving and horn-honking. I caught a fleeting image of the lorry driver, wide-eyed and open-mouthed. I've no idea where they recruit them.

YOU can't keep a good movie cliche down. I wrote some time ago about the universal and unfailing tin-dish cure for wounds inflicted by anything from musket balls to Armalites. You must not only surgically remove the projectile from the flesh but drop it loudly into the dish. Once you hear that "clink!"the patient will recover. I'm delighted to report this cliche works just as well on Mars, as seen in a recent TV screening of the 2015 Matt Damon movie, The Martian. Damon was wounded by a scrap of metal which he duly extracted from his belly with forceps. Cue the metal dish. "Clink!" Another hero saved.

VASELINE, towel and the firm instruction from Jeremy Thorpe (Hugh Grant) to Norman Scott (Ben Whishaw): "Now, get down on all fours." Anyone else find the sex scenes in A Very English Scandal (BBC1) eye-wateringly awkward? Too much information, thanks.

CALL me a wicked old cynic but if you spend a lot of time among newspaper professionals and if you study the chequered history of the Windsors, you might just question the wisdom of bestowing the style of Duke and Duchess of Sussex on Harry and Meghan. No-one knows what the future may bring. In the event of scandal, heaven forfend, the headline writers would have a field day with any title involving the word "sex." The Palace could have chosen a safer county. Yorkshire springs to mind.

INTRODUCING an item about grammar schools for Channel 4 News, Krishnan Guru-Murthy bristled with righteous indignation. Sure, these schools benefited some kids. "But what about the others?" he demanded. This is the same Krishnan Guru-Murthy who graduated from Oxford after being educated in Blackburn at the ancient and prestigious Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School.

CAN anyone explain this? If the Government genuinely believes the Russian state carried out a nerve-agent attack in Salisbury in March, which amounts to an act of war, how can it possibly contemplate the England football team going to the World Cup in Russia next month? Answers on a postcard through my letter box, please. (Don't touch the handle).

Peter Rhodes

By Peter Rhodes

Award-winning columnist and blogger. Keeping an eye on the tribulations and trivia of a fast-changing world


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