Mark Andrews on Rishi's posh pumps, pregnant Scouse blokes and how Will Smith provided the only highlight of the Oscars

Mark Andrews takes a look at the week that was.

Will Smith, right, hits presenter Chris Rock during the Oscars
Will Smith, right, hits presenter Chris Rock during the Oscars

One would presume the primary qualification for the role of Chancellor of the Exchequer would be an eye for figures, a tight grip on costs, no?

Which begs the question of why Dishy Rishi was pictured wearing a £335 pair of trainers. Three hundred sovs for a pair of pumps? I got mine for £16 from Tesco.

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The pompously titled Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences says it is considering how to "sanction" Will Smith for slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars.

Oh, please. Who do these people think they are? The United Nations?

Let's be honest, Chris and Will's contretemps are the equivalent of John McEnroe and Ilie Nastase throwing their toys out the pram at Wimbledon - the only thing worth watching in an otherwise sickening orgy of back-slapping, earnest self-congratulation and right-on virtue signalling.

At least I assume that was the case. Because like almost everybody else offering an opinion on this storm in a teacup, I only saw the clips on the news.

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A couple of months ago, while giving a blood test at my local hospital, a nurse mumbled something uncomprehensible. When I asked her to repeat it, she sheepishly asked: "You are male?" I was a bit taken aback to be honest. Talk of putting you on the spot.

Now Liverpool's Walton Centre NHS Trust is asking all men whether they are pregnant before undergoing scans.

These ludicrous decisions will doubtless be made over tea and biscuits in a room full of people who consider themselves terribly progressive and enlightened. And a world away from the unfortunate staff who have to put this nonsense into practice.

Which is a little disappointing, really. Because I would really love to see some uber-woke pronoun obsessive asking a fat, drunken Scouse bloke whether or not he is preggers.

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Worth every penny – Mipim real estate conference in Cannes

Great news. West Midlands councils which attended last month's Mipim junket – sorry, real-estate conference – in Cannes say the event was "worth every penny".

So glad to hear it. When I saw the pictures of the beach party on the Croisette, I was worried the sky looked a little overcast. That's the problem with alfresco dining in March, you're always liable to get drizzle in your champagne.

Wolverhampton, Staffordshire and Sandwell councils were all present. Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin councils gave it a miss this year, although they have attended in the past. But it appears to be Dudley that led the way. The local council spent £100,000 putting nine staff in a four-star hotel with a rooftop pool, and hosted a cocktail reception for potential investors.

Dudley Council has been attending Mipim for 19 years. Which obviously explains the billions of investment that have poured into its vibrant town centre.

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