This may be an old urban myth, but is it true you once competed in a drag queen Dolly Parton look-a-like contest?

That’s the truth. It was at a gay club in Los Angeles. I lived in this little apartment right up the street from Santa Monica Blvd, right near the gay strip. At one particular club, they had a Halloween costume competition, and people would go dressed as Cher or me or whoever. We saw a whole bunch of Dollys walking around outside the club. So I told my friends, “Let’s go check it out.”

You weren’t afraid of being recognized?

Oh no. It was Halloween, so we just over-exaggerated ourselves. I made my hair bigger, gave myself darker, thicker, more ridiculous makeup, and bigger lips. We walked in, ordered a drink, and watched the show. Then they started the competition, and all the drag queens dressed like me were walking across the stage, to be judged by audience applause who was the best Dolly. I just wanted to watch, but my friends convinced me to get up there. They said, “Go. Go, go, do it.” And I whispered, “Okay, fine.” I jumped onstage and joined the line of Dollys.

Nobody realized you were the real Dolly Parton?

Nobody even knew. Cause I was over-exaggerated. I looked like a clown version of myself. Maybe I went too far, because I lost.

You lost a Dolly Parton look-a-like contest?

I did, yeah. [Laughs.] I got the least applause of anybody. Of course, my friends were cracking up.

How is that possible?

I guess there were some other Dolly Partons who looked more like Dolly Parton than I did. [Laughs.] They were good, I’ll give them that. But when you’re Dolly Parton and you lose a Dolly Parton look-a-like contest, that’s pretty bad.

In which I talk about a Kardashian….

…intellectual property and The Great Tuberoso

We have an interesting little refutation of the strictures of the Senior Lecturer in International Political Economy at Islington Technical College here. For, as we all know, he insists that intellectual property means nothing. It’s just a manner of moving money around the world to dodge tax, it has no real economic import whatsoever. We should therefore simply ignore it all – for all purposes, not just tax if I’ve understood the drivel correctly.

Which is interesting, given that the world’s about to be youngest self-made billionaire, Kylie Jenner, seems to make her money from nothing at all except intellectual property:

Stereotype much?

Eurovision winner Conchita has told fans that she is HIV-positive, and has been in regular treatment for “several years”. The 29-year-old Austrian drag performer made a public statement on Instagram in response to an ex-boyfriend allegedly threatening to reveal the information.

Obviously this would happen

A bitter public feud has erupted among the family of the late French rock star Johnny Hallyday after two of his children challenged his will, which leaves his entire reported €100 million (£89m) estate to his fourth wife.

Hundreds of thousands had gathered to mourn the death of the crooner they called “the French Elvis” at his funeral last month in which President Emmanuel Macron delivered a eulogy that moved many to tears across the country.

But weeks after the huge show of national unity, “Johnny” came back to haunt France after his 34-year old daughter, the actress Laura Smet, announced she was challenging the will because it failed to leave her anything.

Nothing causes family rows quite like inheritance, eh?

Why is it that I just don’t believe this story?

Billionaire James Stunt has claimed that he was the victim of Britain’s biggest ever burglary with £90million of cash and valuables stolen from his house.

Petra Ecclestone’s ex-husband has told police that the Belgravia property, where he moved in December, had been ‘cleaned out’ by thieves while he slept.

The 36-year-old reported the theft on December 14 shortly after taking up residence in the home but police are still hunting the burglars.

Cash was taken from the house along with gold and diamond jewellery, according to The Sun on Sunday.

It was reported that Stunt, whose six-year-marriage to Ecclestone ended last year, had not yet installed CCTV cameras in the luxury home.

‘He is devastated by the loss. It’s a lot of money even for him – though luckily he’s insured’, a source told the newspaper.

I just can’t put my finger on it, just can’t quite spot what slightly jars about this story, making me ponder whether I believe it or not.

And if that’s my reaction what will be that of the insurance company’s loss adjuster?

But to lay down a market for the future. It’s going to be really, really, fun to see whether that claim gets paid out upon. Is there any manner of checking such things? I guess there isn’t, no public register of claims paid etc. But if it isn’t then I can imagine m’learned friends getting involved, which would be public.

On the other hand, a theft which wasn’t insured against would be a neat explanation for why there’s no money other than his wife’s. Not that that could possibly be the real situation of course.

Perhaps a touch of projection here

Prince Charles’s time at school is widely thought to have been far from happy – and he is reported to have even described it as “Colditz in kilts”.

But his Scottish boarding school has hit back after Netflix drama The Crown depicted an unhappy, bullied Charles struggling with cross country runs and hostile classmates.

Gordonstoun School has pointed to a speech the Prince made in the House of Lords, as well as an interview printed in the Observer Magazine, to suggest that he has a more nuanced view of his education that the drama suggests.

Both took place in the 1970s, less than 20 years after he attended the school, and paint the Prince’s time at Gordonstoun in a more positive light than the drama.

Episode 9 of its second series chronicles the Prince’s experiences at the school, focusing on his shabby dormitory, hostile classmates and freezing morning runs.

It also includes a flashback to his father Prince Phillip’s experience at the school, which is located in the north east of Scotland.

Fritz – Peter – Morgan might be projecting a little here. Although Downside really wasn’t that bad when we were there.

No, no, we really shouldn’t laugh

Lily Allen has sparked a furious Twitter backlash after claiming she is unable to move back to the London flat she owns because her tenants are claiming ‘diplomatic immunity’.
The row has seen the singer accused of ‘profiteering’ by renting out the property to wealthy foreigners instead of taking in refugees as she had previously pledged.
In the now-deleted tweet, Ms Allen wrote: ‘Meant to be moving back into my flat this week, but my tenants just dropped that they can’t find anywhere to go up to their standards.
‘Then they said they’re diplomats and have diplomatic immunity and there’s nothing I can do about it.

Unconvinced that diplomatic immunity works that way but still.

Hmm, well

A backing singer for Joss Stone has accused Sir Richard Branson of ‘putting his face in her cleavage’ during a party at his luxurious Necker Island resort.
Antonia Jenae, 44, claims the Virgin boss made an ‘engine boat noise’ as the incident happened.

I know someone who vaguely knows Branson in private life. Well, sorta private life, F1 races, parties, that sort of thing.

His remark one day was that Branson seems to have a rather large and ever changing cast of nieces.

You what?

Terry Adams, a former gangster whose family “firm” is linked to 25 murders, contacted the former Formula One boss offering to help to negotiate financial and other arrangements.

He is assisting James Stunt, a gold trader, after the collapse of his six-year marriage to Petra Ecclestone, 28. Mr Adams is godfather to Mr Stunt

The things you learn in divorce proceedings.

James Stunt

His international man of mystery act is all well and good, but a fluctuating weight and preference for shiny suits combine, at times, to give him the air of a David Brent rather than a James Bond.

I think we can take it that the Mail doesn’t like him.

There is an age at which this happens for actresses

American star Doris Day has received a birthday surprise – she has discovered that she is 95, not 93.

Some number of years of insisting on holding back time and then, when the achievement is running the other way…..

And of course there is always that lovely old joke. She married very young, had a kid, then went on to play all those wholesome innocents. Leading to one ungallant claiming to be so old he knew Doris before she was a virgin.

Couldn’t this be interesting?

‘Britain’s biggest divorce’: Sir Shifty’s multi-millionaire best friend Richard Caring, 68, ‘faces £350m bill after walking out on his wife, 67, to move into £32m mansion with Brazilian lover half her age’
Richard Caring, 68, has allegedly split from his wife of 45 years, Jacqui
Restaurateur and fashion mogul said to have moved in with new partner
Reportedly dumped wife for 35-year-old Brazilian with whom he has son
Jacqui, 67, could be in line for £350m in one of Britain’s richest divorces
Mogul Mr Caring owns several exclusive London eateries including The Ivy and is best friends with Topshop and former BHS owner Sir Philip Green

There is a rumour, entirely unfounded we’re all absolutely certain, that not all of those restaurants and the like were entirely and wholly financed directly. Some nonsensical tale about non-dom status making it convenient for someone domiciled to be the underlying investor, can’t quite understand the whole allegation myself.

A contested divorce would of course put all such stories to rest, wouldn’t it?


Incredible drone footage shows the Church of Scientology’s secretive ‘Gold Base’ HQ – complete with a special gym, suite and full-sized theater just for Tom Cruise

Wouldn’t he fit into a half sized one?

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard – what larks!

Amber Heard has demanded that her ex-husband Johnny Depp double the amount that is paid to charity following their divorce settlement.
She recently pledged to donate the $7m (£5.3m) settlement to two charities for abused women and ill children.
But he has begun to donate the money directly in her name, instead of giving it to her first, leading her to accuse him of trying to reduce his total bill.
She said he must now “honour the full amount by donating $14m to charity”.
On Thursday, the Pirates of the Caribbean star revealed he had paid the first instalments of the original $7m sum to the charities “in the name of Amber Heard”.

So, Johnny’s claiming the charitable donation tax credit then.

Which is very fun because it means that Amber Heard cannot.

An interesting question – is a divorce settlement a taxable event? If it isn’t then this would be the sort of thing to drive Heard into an absolute rage.

Imagine, that it isn’t taxable to her, that $7 million. So, she gets all the kudos of donating it all to charity. And then gets a $7 million write off against her own taxes which, in CA would be about 50% of total income.

She don’t get this credit now. Johnny does. She’s what, $3.5 million worse off because he’s donating directly? Woman scorned and all that.

All does depend on whether a divorce settlement is taxable of course. Dunno. Dennis?