In what feels like the equivalent of sticking my fingers in my ears and singing loudly, I’m not blogging about the Labour party, the economy, the loathsome emergence of the BNP from under its stone, or indeed any of the other things that have been keeping me awake at night recently. Instead I’m trying to recapture the euphoria of watching A Little Night Music in the West End on Friday. Just, please, go and see it. You’ll thank me. It has wit, it has intelligence, it has charm. It has fabulous frocks and Maureen Lipman being grand underneath a very big wig. Its central conceit is that the fresh-faced charms of youth just can’t compare with the allure of an intelligent, mature woman (an argument I find completely persuasive).
Floating out of the theatre I was even reconciled to the horror that is the West End now. Being out on a Saturday night these days increasingly makes me feel like an easily shockable maiden aunt up from the sticks for a spree. Why is the music from all the bars so LOUD? Why do all those nice young girls wear clothes that are two sizes too small? Why is everyone so drunk? (and how the hell do they afford it at those prices? £7.60 for two cups of coffee. £7.60. For coffee.) And where did all those bicycle-rickshaws come from? When I used to go out regularly – some time back in the late Jurassic – there were one or two of them hanging about near Leicester Square tube and they looked quite cute. They have evidently bred like rabbits in the intervening years, turned ferral, and now infest every street in Soho. If you just give me a minute to lace my stays and button my boots, I shall write to Boris. Something Must Be Done.