Matthew Norman’s snooker analogy is perfect.
From his love letter to Labour MP Jess Phillips who is “Barely half a year after being elected for Birmingham Yardley in the Labour interest, she is already a few Twitterstorms away from joining Adele and Nigella in the pantheon of British women who require no surname”.
Linguistically, by her own potty-mouthed standards, the quote sounds restrained. Jess’s finest work to date came some months ago, when Diane Abbott imperiously rebuked her for attacking the leader’s failure to give any of the grandest shadow cabinet jobs to a woman. You may recall Jess reporting that: “I ‘told her to fuck off’.” And whatever, she was asked, did Abbott do? “She fucked off.”Is it any wonder that almost everyone has a huge crush on Jess? She’s young, she’s ballsy, she’s smart, she’s sassy, she’s passionate, she’s naughty (as she told Julie Burchill), she’s “cute” (as Burchill put it when she wrote up the interview as a billet doux). And she is funny. Not “politician funny”, by which I mean you laugh at something Little George Osborne said because his tone hinted at humorous intent. You know, the way a snooker crowd desperate for a break in the tension explodes with mirth if Mark Selby, the alleged Jester from Leicester, says “oops” after dropping his chalk. She is actually, genuinely funny.