First the energy company Ovo suggested we should keep warm by cuddling pets and eating porridge (or was it the other way around?). Next, Octopus Energy recommended “comfort foods” and cups of tea.
Both firms have now been denounced for a sort of victim-shaming, blaming the customers when the real issue is fuel bills going through the roof. And yet, if we're honest, we all know the firms are talking common sense.
Times are changing. If we want to save this planet we must change our ways. The days have gone when we could expect to keep every room in the house constantly warm while loafing around in T-shirts. We must turn down the thermostats, eat well and pull on a few extra layers of winter clothes. And in an age when so many men shave their heads, might it even be time to bring back the old-fashioned sleeping cap to keep those naked bonces warm? One great literary character is invariably portrayed wearing one, and he knew a thing or two about saving money. Ebenezer Scrooge.
The Power of the Dog, the psychological mystery written and directed by Jane Campion and starring Benedict Cumberbatch, has won a string of awards including a bunch of gongs at the Golden Globes. I saw it a few weeks ago and, for me, the real psychological mystery is how such a fine movie failed to stick in the mind. I can't think of a film I enjoyed so much at the time and forgot so quickly.
The BBC is once again under threat of losing the TV licence. From past experience, someone will suggest scrapping Radio 3 and all hell will break loose. Radio 3 is the broadcasting equivalent of Stonehenge. We all know it's a national treasure but we hardly ever go there. I have never knowingly listened to it and I don't know anyone who does. But clearly, some Very Important People love it, so we can safely assume that whatever else is axed, Radio 3 will glide serenely on.
To recap. Boris Johnson was guilty of “industrial-scale partying” in the garden at Downing Street but Keir Starmer was merely necking a few beers with the lads in Durham (which is just down the road from Barnard Castle).