Monday 21 October 2019

Intolerable similarities break up celebrity couple

People are talking

Gwyneth Paltrow struts her stuff at the Goldene Kamera awards ceremony in Berlin last month
Gwyneth Paltrow struts her stuff at the Goldene Kamera awards ceremony in Berlin last month

Donal Lynch, Eilis O'Hanlon, Julia Molony, Will Hanafin, Anne Marie Scanlon

Schadenfreude is not attractive but, it has to be said, many people felt a little spring in their step when they heard the phrase "Chris Martin split" last week.

Then they realised Coldplay are in fact still together and the headlines referred to his 'conscious uncoupling' from wife, Gwyneth Paltrow. The parting of this veritable sea of talent was not caused by their son, Moses. Nor did it cause their daughter, Apple, to crumble. In fact, the reasons for the breakup remain largely mysterious – Gwynnie says she didn't do the dirt either – but it seems that by the end they were just cleanse buddies. Spirituality friends. Co-parents. Preposterous new-noun inventors. Perhaps at the end of the day they can just cite insufferable similarities and leave it at that.

It's difficult to tell what happens now. Coldplay's next album might be a little slow and doleful (oh wait ... ) but, as with all marriage breakdowns, custody will be an issue: who gets Jay Z? Who gets Madonna? Who gets to smugly act like they still have God in their handbag?

One thing seems certain on the tug-of-love front. Chris Martin will secure custody of gluten and trans-fats. After a decade of macrobiotic, ethically conscious fare Martin has probably funded any number of African wells and consumed enough fibre to toilet himself inside out. The internet spoke in unison. Give that man a steak, a bacon butty, a shot of whiskey, a coffee and a cigarette. He's earned it.

- Donal Lynch


Kildare Street muppets get to know their alphabet

In a tribute to Sesame Street, last week's edition of 'Kildare Street' was brought to you by the letter A. That's A for Apology, as Alan Shatter, aka Oscar the Grouch, rose in the Dail to withdraw comments he made recently about Garda whistleblowers not co-operating with inquiries into their allegations.

s was historic because the general rule in Leinster House is that you only say sorry for things that weren't your fault, such as Enda 'Big Bird' Kenny's apology for the Magdalene Laundries. Panic set in among Ministers as they feared a precedent had been set which could lead to them also being held accountable for their actions.

Constitutional experts, however, are certain this is a one-off, which will in no way override decades of Irish government buck-passing. Cue a collective sigh of relief on the Government benches.

Labour and FG also had the shock last week of being confronted with another unusual letter in the shape of R for Resignation, as Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan stepped down. Hasn't he heard the Irish adage: 'whatever you do, don't resign?'

Admittedly, if he hadn't jumped he was probably going to be pushed, so it's more of a 'resigned to his fate' situation rather than a 'resigned from his job'.

Normal service has now been resumed, doing nothing to dispel the view of cynics that Irish politics is dominated by Cookie Monsters addicted to the yummy pay and pensions that come with power.

- Eilis O'Hanlon


Kelly and David to tie the knot

Kelly Brook must have forgiven her boyfriend David McIntosh, aka Tornado from Gladiators, for badger-van-gate.

Close followers of their eventful, Romeo and Juliet-style star-crossed romance will remember that their hopes of happy union were nearly scuppered when it was discovered that they were on different sides of the badger-cull debate. Kelly is a former PETA pin-up, while David was a part-time hearse driver for the slaughtered relations of Mr. Badger from Wind in the Willows.

For some, such an irreconcilable ideological difference would be too much to bear. But Kelly and David, happily, are made of sterner stuff. Last week, after just 12 weeks of romance, one badger controversy and one apparent break-up during which Kelly removed him from all of her social media accounts, the pair announced their engagement by posting a picture on her Twitter account in which she held up a balloon which bore the word 'engaged'.

Kelly later elaborated: "Lovely weekend in Wigan with my new extended family, excited to share my life with the most wonderful man I've met."

And lo, it was official, she was to be whisked down the aisle in double-quick time by a tornado. Cynics might question that approach, and raise queries about the risk of collateral damage, but who are we to judge?

Only Kelly can know what life is like in the eye of that particular storm.

- Julia Molony


Commander crashes to earth

We always seem to need an honorary Irish person in this country. It's like giving out, weird sports and bad telly – it's an essential requirement for living in Ireland.

We've had quite a few honorary citizens over the years. Chris Rea was embraced like a prodigal son and Driving Home for Christmas became our unofficial anthem for a while.

Then there was that country singer Charlie Landsborough. He looked like he was from Nashville, but was really from Wrexham. Of course Garth Brooks is the ultimate honorary Irishman, with his 395 sell-out concerts later this year.

Now we've got a new one! Commander Chris Hadfield, above. Everyone's favourite spaceman has been recruited by Tourism Ireland to front their videos. Poor Chris must be wondering where it all went wrong.

One minute he's orbiting the earth, playing David Bowie covers. Then the next minute he's crashed down to earth watching junior B hurling and taking a tour of the Guinness Storehouse.

- Will Hanafin


Facebook in $2bn virtual deal

SO FACEBOOK has entered the virtual reality game, throwing two billion of their actual reality dollars at a company called Oculus VR in exchange for their, as yet unreleased, space-age headset, right, which, with photo-real quality, will allow its wearers to engage in "immersive video gaming" whether they like it or not.

The easiest way for many of us to grasp this large helping of the future, is think of it like a modern-day version of the Viewmaster which, with its uncomfortable red head contraption and its circular carousel of wild west landscapes, is a device remembered with equal degrees of fondness and frustration.

Some are saying that the development of the virtual reality landscape will throw down the gauntlet to the real world which, with its obsession with doses of stark reality, would want to get its act together and lighten up if it plans to compete with whatever it is that's going on behind those goggles.

But what is clear is that soon the least of your worries will be having that guy you worked with for a week seven years ago liking and commenting on every single one of your Facebook posts.

- Evan Fanning


Scandals are such a Carry On

HAVE you noticed how scandals have started following a tedious template? When the person, usually a man, is caught with his hands in the till, or roving, or hitting send on a 'Sext', he initially denies all knowledge. Then, when presented with incontrovertible evidence, he puts his guilty hands up and acts like he deserves a medal for owning up.

And so it was with Independent TD Patrick Nulty, right, who, it was reported, initially blamed the inappropriate Facebook message he sent to a teenage girl on 'hacking'. On mature reflection, he decided to fess up, blamed alcohol (yawn) and resigned. The Facebook message asking the 17 year old schoolgirl whether she liked being spanked wasn't his only seedy interaction with women. The odd thing about the shamed TD's shenanigans is, despite being only 31, he appears to have a smutty mind straight out of the 1970s. It's all a bit Carry On Up the Dail.

Arguably the most offensive message Nulty sent enquired whether a woman had read Fifty Shades of Grey. Asking if she's read badly written Mummy Porn doesn't count as sexual harassment, but does imply the questioner thinks you have no taste. Even Jamie Dornan, who is starring as Christian Grey in the movie adaptation, says he watched Sex and the City to get in the mood for filming sex scenes. Dear God, if Fifty Shades isn't any good for getting a young man in the mood, then what good is it? At least Dornan hasn't resorted to Carry On for tips. Oooh matron!

- Anne Marie Scanlon

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