Paris in Rio

I hear that Paris Hilton is suffering from a bad case of bottom-envy after visiting the Rio Carnival. No surprise there. The sight of all those of pert posteriors wiggling in the sunshine must have left her feeling thoroughly dejected. Her own butt is nothing special, of course, although she probably never realised it before. A floozy of her calibre tends to believe all the flattery she gets from the dandies and gigolos she consorts with. Frustrated at being upstaged, she agreed to appear in a beer commercial in which she grovelled on all fours like a cow in heat. How the Brazilians must have laughed!

I’ve never understood the popularity of these carnival processions. People dress up in funny costumes and prance down a street expecting onlookers to gasp in admiration. I don’t begrudge them their fun, but it’s hardly great theatre. If you tried to fob off a circus audience with that sort of thing they would throw bottles at the ringmaster. I suspect people who attend such events are driven by the herd instinct. When they see a crowd assembling, they assume it must be a good place to go. The great wildebeest migrations in Africa operate on the same principle.

I appreciate a taut pair of buns as much as the next ape, but that doesn’t mean I would stand in a crowd and bake in the hot sun for a fleeting glimpse. If I wanted to ogle booty in Rio, I would go to the beach and watch the women play volleyball while I relaxed beneath a sunshade. The great thing about ladies’ sports is that you can hoot and whistle to your heart’s content without appearing uncouth. When Martina Hingis won points with her overhead smash, no one knew whether I was applauding her skilful play or her jiggling jahoobies. I wasn’t sure myself, to be honest.

An English tennis instructor on safari once said that lesbians should be banned from the sport.

“Do you think they have an unfair advantage?" I asked, mindful of Navratilova’s bulging forearms.

“It’s not that,” he said. “The problem is corruption. What’s to stop them from throwing matches in return for sexual favours?”

I considered his argument with pursed lips and found it wanting.

“Are you suggesting that non-Sapphic women would offer their bodies to a fanny-fister merely to progress to the next round?” I asked. “Surely women are not so ready to act contrarily to their nature.”

“Women have a different attitude to men about same-sex activities,” he asserted. “They don’t find it disgusting however straight they are. To them, it’s no worse than putting your trousers on back-to-front.”

I tried to picture Mrs Clinton with her trousers on back-to-front, but the image failed to gel in my mind.

“As I do not wear trousers, I find it difficult to comment on your analogy,” I said. “I nevertheless maintain that banning lesbians from tennis would be a retrograde step.”

“Please yourself,” he replied laconically. “I never knew gorillas were so PC.”

I think of this conversation whenever humans associate gorillas with reactionary tendencies. In truth, we are a progressive force in the jungle.

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