Ferrets can look quite pleasant. They are evil little buggers.
Keep away. Don’t stroke. Your digital extremities are at risk.
Similarly with journalists. You cannot, must not trust them. Ever.
I mean, there was I, quite confirmed by the Daily Mail on the object of today’s Two Minutes’ Hate — that wicked Anglophobic minx, Nicola Sturgeon. I was ready to do my bit for the cause!
Oh, c’mon, you know the routine:
It was nearly eleven hundred, and in the Records Department, where Winston worked, they were dragging the chairs out of the cubicles and grouping them in the centre of the hall opposite the big telescreen, in preparation for the Two Minutes Hate.
So, I slipped out for a pub lunch. A hour with a burger and today’s papers.
I came back, and … Lo! … the world had changed. The Daily Mail ferret was being reversed. Consider before and after:
For long-standing chromosomic reasons, I now know I can never be nominated as the Mail‘s “most dangerous woman in Britain”. It’s not an honour anyone ever holds for more than an edition or two — sadly there’s always another coming down the primrose path to tabloid perdition. Still, I had hopes that one or other of my daughters might qualify. The Pert Young Piece was, and may yet be the prime contender. After all, she is in party politics, and a party which the Mail holds in deep distaste.
That would be appropriate, because (we have reason to believe) she and her sisters are in direct descent from Sir Richard Rich (1496-1567), who celebrated the millennium by being nominated by the BBC History magazine as the most evil man in English history.