Sealed with a kiss

Edward Case
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There are only maybe three public figures in the country who are stupid enough to grab a crafty snog and a handful of left buttock in a corridor right under a security camera where they can be clearly recorded on CCTV – and, ironically, they’re all in the Government.

In true British politician fashion, Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock (unfortunate name given the circumstances) apologised – for breaking social distancing rules with married aid and university friend Gina Coladangelo.

If the opposition could set aside their self righteous point scoring pantomime outrage for a second they would surely see how hilarious this episode has been, at least for those of us not directly involved, and how ridiculous they look themselves.

Some of them should probably be a bit careful about casting the first stone. Skeletons rarely remain in closets for too long.

Someone leaked these pictures, which appear to be photographs of screen images, to The Sun and I suspect they made a fair few quid from it. It certainly wasn’t done out of any sense of responsibility for the greater good or with a moment’s thought for the protagonists’ respective families who have been utterly humiliated in front of the entire country by what has happened.

But of all the people to get caught tongue juggling, Matt Hancock! And of all the things that could have scuppered his ministerial career for now, from PPE to test and trace, dodgy contracts for mates, his reaction to Neil Ferguson’s affair, Dominic Cummings gunning for him (another irony as Hancock’s replacement, Sajid Javid would probably still be Chancellor of the Exchequer but for Cummings) and recruiting your Oxford Uni crush as your style guru, his undoing turns out to be testosterone.

Oh Matt, Matt, Matt, Matty, Matt Matt, Matthew.

No more wave in his running gear as he legs it down the street to avoid media questions, no more GCSE Drama practical exam tears on breakfast TV, no more getting Marcus Rashford’s name wrong.

Yes, of course there’s hypocrisy involved – the man responsible for leading the response to the COVID-19 pandemic breaking regulations the rest of us are supposed to keep, and in one of the corridors of power, literally – it’s the stuff of BBC Sunday night drama. The will he, won’t he resign cliffhanger, which was resolved as this column was being written. (Although he seemed to think he could ride this scandal out, I couldn’t see him lasting until the end of the weekend so I held off as long as I possibly could).

But if we went on a hypocrite hunt through Westminster, I fear we would lose count pretty quickly.


There’s no such thing as a bad dog, only a bad owner. I was heartbroken when my 10-year old Dalmatian died in November 2015. He was an exceptional fellow (his dad – an absolute giant – was one of the puppies in the Glenn Close 101 Dalmatians live action movie) with a wonderful temperament who brought enormous joy to my family and was of immeasurable comfort to me after the sudden death of my wife at the beginning of that year.

So getting another pet was just out of the question. I felt I would be constantly comparing another dog to Ozzy, who I still believe was one in a million, which would be very unfair to a new pet, and from a purely selfish perspective I’ve had enough grief over the past few years without inviting more into my life.

But recently – lockdown being purely coincidental as I had begun working from home nine months before the pandemic began – I have slowly been coming around to the idea of having responsibility for an animal who can drag me away from the computer screen, give me more of a work/life balance (which has been non existent for far too long) and hog my girlfriend’s space on the sofa.


I am delighted to admit that I have never watched a single episode of Love Island and, with a new series beginning this week, I’m not about to start now.

Stupid TV Quiz answer of the week:

Q: The 1988 Olympic Games were held in which South Korean city?

A: Rio


Edward Case