Tuesday 28 January
9st 1 (vg); alcohol units 2 (not nearly enough to prevent heart attack:
must do better); cigarettes 5 (excellent); calories 8,243 (poor).
no. Scary dinner party tonight with lawyer-style people. Mark Darcy says
it would be a good idea to join in the conversation more instead of
sitting in silence looking terrified and that it was not necessary to
say "Please may I get down?" to the hostess at the end of the
meal. Obviously I know that, and on the occasion when it happened it was
an accident brought on by Louise Barton-Forster who is an incredibly
opinionated partner in Mark's law firm and the sort of woman you can
imagine forcing you to eat cabbage. Anyway will make an effort to join
in perhaps even reading the paper to form opinions. Hmm. Think will put
different bra on.
Back home. Disaster. Was determined to join in but Louise Barton-Forster
was hogging the entire conversation with complete gibberish "but in
a sense one could argue the entire ER Emeuro Proto is a
Gerbilisshew". Then heard chap at other end of the table going,
"What we need to be talking about is what kind of party people
would have it this was a subject very close to my heart. "I
completely agree," I joined in eagerly, seeing Mark look pleased.
"What people really want is back to basics." Emboldened by
Mark's proud expression I went on. "The time parties were really
good was when everyone was united in a common purpose, and half an hour
after you arrived all the lights would be off and everyone was snogging
on the floor."
Mark burst into polite laughter which didn't sound at all like him, but
which everyone else joined in. "But seriously", he said,
shooting me a filthy look, "I think you're absolutely right, Nigel.
If I'm going to vote Tory again I want to know my views are being a)
researched and b) represented."
at Mark, dumbstruck, in complete horror. Felt like my friend Simon did
once when he was playing with some lovely little children at a party
then their grandfather turned up and he was Robert Maxwell. I have
always known there was something a bit odd about Mark Darcy - keeping
Japanese Rabbitboys in his bed and wanting to put on my hip-and-thigh
slimmer - but had never suspected I had been sleeping with a man who
voted Tory. Suddenly felt I didn't know him at all, and for all I knew,
all the time we had been going out he had been slipping off to rugby
matches on a coach, and mooning at other motorists out of the back
very tight-lipped in the car on the way home. "What's the
matter?" he said.
quivering. Come on. What is it?" Eventually he stopped the car and
made me tell him.
I vote Tory, what's wrong with that?" he said, staring at me
but..." I stammered. "I mean if I voted Tory I'd be a social
outcast. It would be like turning up at Cafe Rouge on a horse with a
pack of beagles and Charles and Camilla in tow or having dinner parties
on shiny tables with side plates."
do you vote?" he said.
of course," I hissed. "Everybody votes Labour."
I think that's patently been proved not to be the case, so far," he
said. "Why, anyway?"
do you vote Labour?"
because..." I paused thoughtfully, "because voting Labour
stands for being left-wing". He looked at me strangely. "And
socialist", I added.
what does that mean?"
workers standing together."
Blair hasn't exactly been shoring up the powers of the unions, has
he?" he said. "Look at Clause IV."
the Tories are rubbish."
he said, in a really nasty cold superior voice. "The economy's in
better shape now than it's been in for seven years."
it's not," I said emphatically, suddenly realizing I had no idea
what I was talking about. "Anyway they've probably just put it up
because there's an election coming."
what up?" he said. "Put the economy up? How does Blair's stand
on Europe compare to Major's?"
left of centre," I said doubtfully. "Anyway he would rescue
why hasn't Blair matched the Tory promise to increase spending on health
year by year in real terms?"
If only Jude and Shazzer had been there it would have been all right
since they could have explained it is perfectly obvious that Labour
stands for sharing, kindness, gays, single mothers and Nelson Mandela as
opposed to braying bossy men having affairs with everyone shag shag shag
left right and centre and going to the Ritz in Paris then telling all
the presenters off on the Today programme.
it is important to vote for the principle of the thing, not on the itsy
bitsy details about this per cent or that per cent. But Mark just
started up the car and drove along going on and on about pledges on VAT
and Labour and the single currency to the point of utter boredom.
Eventually instead of driving us back to his place, he drove straight to
mine, and didn't even undo his safety belt or turn off the engine.
he said, "if you persist in these bigoted, ill-informed woolly
liberal views I don't see how there can be any future for us. I'll call
you tomorrow to discuss this more calmly."
between love and my political principles in manner of Harriet Harman,
Romeo and Juliet or similar. Oh my God. Am on horns of dilemma. Oooh, I
wonder if Eurotrash is still on on the telly.