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Sleuth 27/02/2009

First amongst equals with Congestion Charge, United improve on prawn sandwiches, Corrie closed off, taking flight, little shoes and reductions in strange places

Published on February 27th 2009.

Sleuth 27/02/2009

Sleuth is a sideways glance at the city every week. We give £25 for every story/rumour and piece of absurdity you find for us to print. We ask for the money back if any legal action follows.

First for No
Sleuth was intrigued by the MEN in the MEN bigging up its own website. Bless. But Sleuth has to contend the statement that their website was the leading forum for debate in the run-up to the congestion charge. That would have been us fellas. As for the line that 'we announced the 'No' result immediately on line', good for them. Confidential announced the 'no' result even before it had been officially announced. This was one of our ranters on the story: Dave says..“ I don't understand - how come ManCon know before everyone else?!”

United move on from prawn sandwiches
Sleuth was intrigued by Manchester United this week. It seems that things have moved on since Roy Keane’s lament that some fans were more interested in ‘prawn sandwiches’ than supporting the team. It would appear that a better quality of crustacean is required now that the team are Champions of Europe and the World. MUTV, the in-house TV channel, has a new Masterchef-type series which sees players cooking various dishes. The first programme saw Patrice Evra cooking that well known working class Mancunian football classic Lobster Ravioli (click here). Those prawn sandwiches are so yesterday.

Flights of Fancy
Sleuth was at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) at the launch of a series of events to mark 100 years of flight in the UK: Manchester-born Alliott Verdon Roe was the first Brit to fly in 1909. Assembled bigwigs included Museum Director, Steve Davies, the City Council’s Chief Executive, Sir Howard Bernstein, and AV Roe’s grandson, Eric Verdon-Roe. Sleuth and the guests were able to see a replica of the original British ‘flying machine’, which has been painstakingly built by MOSI volunteers. It will be test flown later this year. Steve Davies chatted to Sleuth, describing the plane's features and quipping that, “the inflight catering is better than Ryan Air’s.” Sleuth thinks there's no argument.

Coronation Boo Street
Whilst at MOSI Sleuth discovered a disturbing truth. Granada are spoilsports. Time was when you could go to Xperiment! hands-on interactive gallery in the Museum and spy on celebrities. The windows there looked straight down on the set of Coronation Street. If you were very lucky you’d get more than just a vision of the famous street but you’d also glimpse the fine thespians of Coronation Street doing what they do best: standing around waiting to be filmed. Fans loved it. Now the killjoys of TV have won out. Granada have requested that the windows be white-washed to prevent people peeping in. The Street has shut itself off.

Sex less in Bloomers
You know there’s a recession on when you see signs like this. The photograph below is of a sex shop on Bloom Street. It’s offering 70% off. Sleuth is confused. Does this mean people are having less sex? Or does it mean that people can’t afford those little extra luxuries in life?

A final small point
Sleuth was out on the town on Thursday night and passed this car (pictured below) parked off Oxford Road. Apparently Snow White was out with her dwarfs and they’d been refused entry into a club because they were wearing trainers. Fortunately Snow White had brought their proper shoes along and they’d all changed out of the trainers into more appropriate footwear. All except Angry who’d stormed off.

Stereotypical channel hopping
Whenever Confidential writes anything about the Village we get told off, even though the writers are gay. Ranters say that we keep rolling out the old camp, giggly, silly clichés about gay lifestyles. You know the arched brow, ooo-er madam, tottering on high heels stuff. So Sleuth was surprised with the name chosen by a proper serious gay and lesbian internet TV channel launching in Manchester. This looks the real deal, with documentaries, intelligent commentary and so on. “What’s the name?” Sleuth asked his informant. “Fruit TV,” came the reply. Clearly the owners just couldn’t help themselves.

Dreams of Trimble
Sleuth watched University Challenge on Monday and was disappointed by Corpus Christi College’s triumph over the University of Manchester in the final. Still it was a joy to watch the winning team’s captain, Gail Trimble, solve complex chemical and mathematical problems on air. Trimble is the new thinking-man’s favourite fantasy (or maybe just Sleuth’s): “take those glasses off love, shake that hair down, slide over here and tell me about vectors”. There were the inevitable University Challenge questions about the periodic table which Trimble got right as well. Sleuth mused that although the words ‘periodic table’ periodically enter his head, he permanently hasn’t the faintest idea what it is. Sleuth’s going to ask the editor for more science articles. Maybe get on the next University Challenge team from Manchester.

Mixed up words
Sleuth has been intrigued by some typos and indiscretions over the last week or so, not all of which have been on Confidential. It tickled him that the Royal Institute of British Architecture’s coffee table book on the city says Exchange Square was designed by Martin Schwartz not Martha Schwartz – bloody spellchecker. Meanwhile in a superb piece of journalism from the Daily Mail, the captain of the American women’s football team, Hope Solo (that is her real name) was interviewed about a novel idea. Apparently the players in the new American Women’s Premier League can opt to wear skirts rather than shorts on the pitch. Solo said: ‘I think the skirt may or may not take off.' How penetrating. Sleuth’s fave though was Manchester’s very own local newspaper saying just before the Oscars that the late Heath Ledger was ‘dead cert’ to gain a gong. You bet.

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13 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2009.

lots of gay entrepreneurs are a bit set in their fruity camp marketing ways now. (rather like MC's Gay page) They don't seem to be able to reach beyond last centrury and madge and kylie wordship. In the naughties most of us became straighting acting and gay students wanted intelligent talk in bed :-) Fruit is only to entertain the staights in the Pride Parade.

EditorialFebruary 27th 2009.

Thoroughbred Manc....sorry we were delving in the back office shifting things around and inadvertantly cut your comment. If you want to re-post, that would be far-sighted of you, if not hyperopian.

Thoroughbred MancFebruary 27th 2009.

Sleuth, you're taking the p*ss, now.

ChippychapFebruary 27th 2009.

It's not Evra making lobster raviola I want to watch, it's Rooney cramming it in his gob by the handful

SleuthFebruary 27th 2009.

Marv you're right but the Sleuth hadn't known it had been ordered by Granada.

I Can See YouuuuuFebruary 27th 2009.

Actually, a MOSI employee told me a couple of years ago that the spy-holes at MOSI had been blocked out because pervs and stalkers (and even paps) had cottoned on to the good view as well as more innocent nosey types. It was largely done for the privacy and well-being of the Street actresses. MOSI weren't upset to oblige either, as the windows were in a very child-friendly part of the museum, if I recall, so it wasn't an ideal spot to be having creepy weirdos hanging around.

marvFebruary 27th 2009.

granada have had that white washed for ages mate, I expect better from the sleuth!!!

EditorialFebruary 27th 2009.

Thoroughbred Manc....oops.

Angry the DwarfFebruary 27th 2009.

I can't stand that dress code thing with shoes.

A University Challenge pedant writesFebruary 27th 2009.

Don't know which final you were wtaching, but Ms Trimble answered no questions on mathematics and her team-mate answered all three of the questions on the periodic table (and got one or two wrong). Was Sleuth's mind wandering whilst fantasising?

ChippychapFebruary 27th 2009.

As for mixed-up words, I took a cutting from the MEN classifieds years ago advertising a "Three Piece ****e" sounded like a bargain.

SleuthFebruary 27th 2009.

Are you sure? Didn't she answer all their questions the foxy minx? Didn't she tease the Manchester team with letting them be on top until the last seven minutes? Yes I was distracted.

DRakeFebruary 27th 2009.

But what's this? Corpus Christi cheated. Scandal! www.guardian.co.uk/…/gail-trimble-university-challenge-sam-kay…

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