Thursday, August 12, 2010

Gordon in the morning: Ellie of a job, Smarty

This morning, Gordon meets Ellie Goulding, who seems to be on a press to try and make herself seem a bit more interesting. We're now getting, it seems, her struggle:

The odds were stacked against her making it in the cut-throat music industry after a tough upbringing.
Why would having a "tough" upbringing "stack the odds" against making it in a "cut-throat" industry? Wouldn't coming from a tough background toughen you up for a tough job?

It turns out, though, that while not idyllic, Goulding's childhood wasn't especially unusual:
Her dad walked out when she was just five, leaving her mum to bring up four children.

Ellie hated the man who became her stepdad and witnessed some traumatic scenes growing up, including visits from bailiffs who repossessed the TV as she sat watching it with her brother and sisters.
Not fun, but not out of the ordinary for a lot of people.

And the stepdad?
"We didn't have much money and my stepdad was horrible. He wasn't strict and he wasn't drunk, he just wasn't very intelligent.

"He had no brains at all. He was a lorry driver with a tattoo of a bulldog smoking a spliff. The other tattoo he had was a snake with a dagger through it."
I'm surprised at this point none of the senior Sun staff came through waving their arms, given that Goulding is describing the paper's hardcore demographic.

It might not have been much fun, but living in a council house and sharing a room with your sister isn't really going to get her past the first round in a Four Yorkshiremen debate.

Unhappy, yes, but...
"I think a lot of people would be closed about such a weird childhood"
'We didn't have much money and I didn't like my stepdad' isn't weird, though, is it? You wouldn't wish for such an upbringing, but I think you'll find there's thousands and thousands of kids who are a lot worse off.

Ellie, do you have anything that bad which happened to you?
She is dating Radio 1 DJ GREG JAMES
You poor, poor thing. Quick, WH Smiths, clear a corner of the Tragic Life Stories shelves.

Elsewhere in The Sun, their battle against Southampton continues:
TODAY we are printing the most one-sided match report in the history of The Sun.
That sounds unlikely, given the England coverage, but do carry on.
While applauding Plymouth's amazing victory we are deliberately ignoring one of the hottest title favourites in history.

All this is down to Southampton's draconian executive chairman Nicola Cortese. His totally crazy decision to ban national and local newspaper photographers from the game will hurt his club more than he thinks.

This senseless move will not make him extra money but it will turn the fans and, more importantly, sponsors away from the club.
Southampton have banned agency photographers from their ground, insisting that all photos be sourced via the club. The worry is that the football team might then start adding all sort of strings to the photos - trying to use the access to the pictures to shape what's actually reported. In extremes, Southampton might insist that you could only use their pictures if you write in positive terms about the club.

The Sun isn't going to allow such a situation to develop. Can you imagine a proud title like The Sun throwing away its journalistic integrity just to get a few snaps? Thank god it has integrity and knows a line in the sand when it sees... hang on, what's this in yesterday's Guardian diary?
Clunk! A contract thumps on our desk from Stuart Higgins Communications offering the Guardian rights to republish Hello! magazine's coverage of Robbie Williams's wedding to Ayda Field. How could we refuse such a prospect from Higgie, known in his days on the Sun's newsdesk as the human sponge? Well, one or two problems: we could probably cope with the requirement that the magazine cover should be reproduced in full colour and not smaller than 7cm in size and even the tag that it is really a Hello! exclusive. We're just a bit foxed by clause 3: "No derogatory references to be made to Hello! magazine or to the artists referenced. The piece must appear in a positive context." Well, really – as if we'd do anything else ...
Apparently The Sun operates one rule on the sports desk, and a totally different one in Gordon's kingdom.