Diary of an old cheeser

Hi there! Like other blogs, this is my chance to wax lyrical (some might say talk utter cr*p) about a) what's happening in my life b) all of my pet obsessions in particular music, tv, movies, books and other generally connected things, quite often of the retro, old and "cheesy" variety. Hence the title of my blog. Feel free to leave a comment if the mood takes you. There's nothing like a good chinwag about one's favourite topics and besides I love to meet new people! Cheers, Simon

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Duel of the drama queens

Just watched an absolutely hilarious instalment of How Not To Decorate, the interior design show with Scottish homo couple Justin Ryan and Colin McAllister. I've been aware of these designer, image-obsessed bufties for ages, but never really watched them on TV before. To tell the truth I'd always found them both a bit off-putting - just TOO perfect and groomed, like a pair of queenie Crystal Kens strutting (or should that be sashaying?) down Old Compton Street, showing off their designer togs in best "look at me" fashion. I bet they even dress up to the nines just to watch TV at home - one could hardly imagine them sitting on the sofa in trackie bottoms and baseball caps, perish the thought. Having got that one off my chest, I can't help admiring the fact that they've been an item for 21 years and it's also good to see a successful gay couple getting considerable media exposure, a bit like Mr Barrowman and his fella.

Anyway, whatever my reservations about the buftie twosome, their show tonight was entertaining to the max, mainly owing to the fact that Just and Cols were given the task of redecorating the home of ….Christine and Neil Hamilton. Wahey!! Yes, I'm talking about Neil the weirdo Tory politician, with a propensity for wearing silly bow ties and Christine, his no-nonsense, battleaxe of a wife, who has scary hair and even scarier dress sense - pin-striped red and white blazers anyone? (And if you want to know about the most notorious story involving the Hamiltons, try here). Suffice to say, "dear" old Neil and Christine have always been a pretty whacky and eccentric pair. For me the Hamiltons have always summed up everything that is naff and provincial about English culture whilst simultaneously (and I'm not quite sure how) possessing a weird individualism all of their very own. But you can imagine the resultant fireworks when they crossed paths with Justin and Colin. It was a total hoot.

Being trendy, with-it young gays, Colin and Justin had somewhat more...radical...concepts to Christine and Neil when it came to interior design. Christine was opposed to the boys' plans from the word go, proclaiming that she hated "avocado baths" and vetoing many of their ideas. Admittedly some of the boys' suggestions were a bit outlandish - lurid pink armchairs in the lounge and a pink carpet with a black border (which ended up getting reversed so the carpet was mainly black - it didn't look great, put it that way). But I did think they did a good job with the kitchen and bathroom.

Funniest of all were the heated exchanges between Colin, Justin and Christine (Neil stayed mainly out of it - like Dennis Thatcher it seems that he's dominated by the Iron Lady in this relationship, and prefers to take a back seat). Christine certainly gave the gay boys a run for their money in the hissy fit stakes. As she got more and more agitated about her ideas being disregarded and the work not getting completed on time, the drama quotient was rapidly upped. It was handbags at dawn with many a cutting, bitchy comment thrown back and forth.

Justin's response to Christine's dismay at his interior design suggestions was to tell her: “Darling, you’re hardly the bastion of style yourself” and “You really are an old bitch, Christine”. To which Christine continually told him to "Shut up" and "No!!" and "Don't baby me! Stop touching me like that!"

Later Mrs H proclaimed: "The boys are bossy, domineering, and opinionated." Erm pot = kettle, love? Pot = kettle? Neil surely hit the nail on the head when he stated: "Christine just doesn’t like competition from other domineering people”. Precisement, monsieur.

When things finally looked like they were getting under control, Colin told Christine: “Your hair is very Mrs Thatcher isn’t it?” To which Christine responded in best posh fashion: “Oh fuck off!”

But the boys did try to be nice to her on occasion as well, referring to her as "Poppet". Christine commented: “Poppet? That’s nice! It was “angel cake” a while ago.”

Colin replied: “Yeah but then you went stale”. (!!)

And then when the final version of the flat was unveiled, Mrs H actually seemed... touched! As Justin said: “You are actually crying Christine - darling, you are actually human!”

Perhaps. Christine H is certainly a splendid character and a drama queen of the first order. She has a certain campness about her that can't be denied and with comments like: "Why are all the handsome men gay?” one can't help but find her amusing. And I can just see her in some horribly inappopriate get-up, attempting to look sexy but not really pulling it off - like a crimplene basque, fish-nets and feather boa - performing in a gay club whilst singing Shirley Bassey numbers. In her naff, provincial yet paradoxically unique way, I think old Christine would go down a storm. With Neil as her gimp of course.


  • At 7:16 am , Blogger Steve said...

    Really wished I'd watched it now - sounded a right hoot. I think youought to pitch your idea of the show to a big buck producer... Chrissie in crimpolene would be a real crowd puller. Though not literally, I hope...

  • At 2:17 pm , Blogger Minge said...

    Colin and Justin spit-roasted me in the 1980s.

  • At 6:31 pm , Blogger Old Cheeser said...

    Now that I would like to have witnessed, Minge.


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