Let nobody deny that there are any stunning experiences at the Millennium Dome. This week, I walked across the almost deserted forecourt and found a ticket booth: "One adult, one 12 year old and one six year old, please," I said. "That'll be fifty-three pounds," the man in the booth replied.
It's a slovenly New Year's resolution that only kicks in half way through February, but the sight of my brand new Speedo goggles hanging from a kitchen hook provides comforting evidence whenever I'm brewing up that I have finally turned my fitness aspirations for the new millennium into aquatic
So they've done it then, the Lords have seen off the buggers!
Each week, the Times book pages feature a regular item on "How I Write" in which someone with a new book out describes whether they use a pencil or a word processor.
Alun Michael, the beleaguered bardic premier, should have remembered that if a week is a long time in politics, six years is not. Mr Charisma has got into difficulties as First Person of Wales largely because he cannot get Treasury funding for his Welsh Budget.
Let's hear it for the choco-terrorist, the bosomy blonde Birgit who, with a little help from her friend Max Clifford, spread an eclair across Nick Brown's face and herself across the front page of every national newspaper.
In all the years I have been active on race relations issues, I have never heard of Raj Chandran. Yet he is apparently the longest-serving member of the governing body of the Commission for Racial Equality.
She brought the 35-hour week to France, a reform of global reach. But is she a visionary or a bully?
Here she is, crunching figures on Countdown. There she goes, revamping gnome-infested landscapes on Carol Vorderman's Better Gardens. And, oh, could that be Carol spreading cholesterol-lowering margarine on toast in a commercial?
The people of the Caribbean never cease to amaze me. They seem to be slowly creeping back to colonialism.
Once, it pressed for workers' canteens; now, the messiah of stakeholding comes to change the state i
I knew from the reviews that Time Regained was on the longish side but, by the time I tipped out of the Renoir cinema, I had the distinct impression that I'd been out of the country for the best part of a fortnight.
Clause 28, Thatcher's hate child for the gay community, is creating a real palaver at Westminster. The government first announced that its abolition would be a whipped vote, then backed down in the face of religious pressure, then caved in from that position in the face of a revolt by the PLP.
This week I discovered that there is something called the British Association of Toy Retailers. It even has a boring name. Why couldn't it be called the British Association of Toy Sellers? Then it could be known as BATS. That would be a bit funnier.
The other day, a person who had just become a columnist for a scientific journal wrote to ask me how I avoided repeating myself in this column. I was tempted to reply, a la Groucho Marx, that I would never consider giving advice to anybody who was stupid enough to ask it from me.
Tomorrow, in his classroom, your teenage son will be subjected to pornographic videos hailing fisting as fab. Your daughter meanwhile will be deluged with pamphlets portraying lesbian love as the only way to come.
Some weeks ago I spoke at a conference on education of blacks in Hackney, organised by the local MP, Diane Abbott. It was full of anxious parents wanting the best for their children.
Lately life has come to resemble the Harry Enfield sketch "Women, know your place".
It looked absolutely fine in The Good Hotel Guide.
The success of the BBC political correspondent John Sergeant in landing the plum £140,000-a-year job of ITN political editor brings joy to fat, self-regarding 55-year-old Quasimodos everywhere, including me. But the Beeb is in a lather about his replacement.
Stop and search is back. Well, not quite. We are three quarters of the way there. The police have invented something quite ridiculous - stop and talk. And then maybe, maybe not, the search.
I can't think what brought it on, but all week I've been imagining that I was a high-ranking government minister and was suddenly required to produce a coherent explanation for one or other of my past moral lapses.
The Blair government's resumption of arms sales to Indonesia ends an unreported hoax. The four-month "ban", supposedly in re-sponse to the renewed repression in East Timor, was hardly a ban at all.
A cross between Goebbels and George Bernard Shaw, even his jokes betray a galloping didacticism. Ben
It's now a month since Christmas and our 12 year old has watched The Matrix at least six times. Admittedly the film is supposed to be restricted to people aged 15 and above, but I don't understand the certification system in this country.
Collectivism is dead, executed by new Labour, as we know. But hark! Fresh stirrings in the undergrowth.
Woody Allen wants to move to London. He feels, according to a forthcoming biography, that his affair with his ex-lover's adopted teenage daughter didn't go down too well in America.
Have you heard about "clean slate syndrome"? It is - reputedly - a new psychotherapeutic term invented to deal with the tendency for married people to respond to the onset of the "new millennium" by getting divorced.
Jonathan Aitken may have been studying the Bible in the nick, but as homecomings went, his did not exactly follow the script of the parable: no jubilant rejoicing, no killing of the fatted calf.