ITV News may never quite hit the hysterical heights of its obvious Day Today influences, but by Jehovah, Mark Austin, Mary Nightingale and t'gang are certainly trying their hardest...
Tonight at least we escaped some entirely-unnecessary and embarrassing attempt to piggy-back onto some sort-of-fashionable Big Brother / Deal Or No Deal / X Factor-style graphics and format for a dull political story. Instead, the latest fatuous time-wasting about surely the least interesting and important aspect of the tedious John Prescott saga was given the self-satisfied label: "Croquet-gate".
Okay, okay... Okay... Leaving aside the dullness of it all (and surely it's time for someone to pick up and run with the potential of Peter Oborne's revelation in the Evening Standard, that David Cameron takes regular afternoon snoozes in his office as visitors come, vainly, to call...?)... why oh why oh why oh why do people insist on attaching "-gate" to wannabe scandals...?
"Watergate" was so called, because Watergate was the actual name of the hotel base of local Democrat activists, raided by Republican "rat-fuckers" (pardon my French, but so they dubbed themselves). Splitting the title into its constituent parts sheds no insight whatsoever into the affair itself.
Thus, adding "-gate" to so-called scandals is just, well... stupid. Surely...?
You might just as well call this latest one "Water-croquet".
Though that does indeed suggest something else entirely...
And a pastime in which you really wouldn't want to see John Prescott taking part.
(This John-Prescott's-a-bit-of-a-tub-really-isn't-he-eh? gag should have been brought to you this coming Friday by the current scriptwriters behind Have I Got News For You..)