THIS pandemic will leave many legacies in its wake – most of them bad.
But one thing we may come to regard as a silver lining is the belief we are all in this together — even celebrities.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updatesThis week, Kim Kardashian boasted about her lavish 40th birthday celebrations on a private islandCredit: Instagram
For years we have been enthralled by the exploits of the rich and famous with their amazing clothes, exciting love lives, enviable beach bodies and all-round lavish lifestyles.
We have envied them. We have emulated them. We have wished we could be them.
But then an international pandemic arrived and we realised celebrities are just like the rest of us — mere humans, trapped at home by something out of their control, worrying about money and work, fearing about whether they can see their nearest and dearest or ever leave their home again.
But this week Kim Kardashian posted a series of pictures on social media documenting her 40th birthday celebrations — and that theory went out of the window.
You know, just her “closest inner circle” taking moonlit ocean dips and dancing . . . at a private island resort in Tahiti.
Given the hardships that people have been experiencing, and the fresh challenges that the new lockdown will bring, her description of how the trip came about read like a parody.
“After two weeks of multiple health screens and asking everyone to quarantine, I surprised my closest inner circle with a trip to a private island where we could pretend things were normal, just for a brief moment in time.
“We danced, rode bikes, swam near whales, kayaked, watched a movie on the beach and so much more.
“I realise that for most people, this is something that is so far out of reach right now, so in moments like these I am humbly reminded of how privileged my life is. #thisis40”
Her husband Kanye West firmly jumped onto Planet Celebrity with his, er, birthday present to Kim.
It involved him attempting to bring back her father Robert from the dead via a hologram.
It showed him dancing, telling her how proud he was of her and saying: “Look at you, you’re all grown up.”
In moments like these I am humbly reminded of how privileged my life is.
It would have creeped the hell out of me. But it worked for Kim, who posted: “It is so life-like. We watched it over and over, filled with emotion.”
Kim’s birthday post sparked outrage online among people who called the trip “selfish” and accused the star of dis-regarding the pandemic and its financial impact.
I am not surprised.Fans were outraged by her post, in which she claimed she was 'humble' while boasting about her 'privilege'Credit: Instagram While the rest of the world struggles to survive, she enjoyed a lavish bash with 40 guestsCredit: Instagram She was even gifted a hologram of her late father RobertCredit: Twitter
Kim, love, there is literally nothing humble about you, nor your birthday celebrations.
In fact, the only way to describe the whole operation is showy — and tone deaf.
But Kim isn’t alone. This week Katie Price denied having a lavish lifestyle — while on a Skype call to a bankruptcy hearing, from the Maldives.
She, too, has been sharing Instagram snaps — of her and boyfriend Carl during their stay at a £1,400-a-night resort on the Indian Ocean islands.
It is her sixth getaway since she was declared bankrupt last November.
HUGE COST TO LIBERTY
Did they stop to think that the rest of the world is struggling to survive?
That Covid numbers are on the rise? That many people are truly terrified about what the future holds for jobs and their families’ health?
Covid-19 has really brought out the best and worst in people. The best is the sense of community. The worst is the sense of entitlement that some people have managed to hold on to, despite everything.
Look at Gordon Ramsay, who drove his family to their second home in Cornwall. Or Madonna flying to New York for a birthday party.
And of course Dominic Cummings, who drove 260 miles from London to Durham with Covid symptoms when the country was in lockdown.
Doing what they want while some people had not even been able to say goodbye to dying relatives.
I now realise it is poppycock to think we are in it together.
The response to Covid-19 is, in fact, just a two-tier operation.
There is the tier with rules that we are expected to follow — at huge cost to our lives and liberty.
And then the other tier for people, including celebrities, who continue to do what they like without thinking of the feelings of others.
Not very green at all
A FEW years ago, anyone claiming to create diamonds out of thin air would be discounted as a fantasist. But green-energy tycoon Dale Vince is now doing just that.
He likens the concept behind his so-called Sky Diamonds to alchemy, the medieval pseudoscience of turning base metals into gold.
He refers to his eco-friendly approach as “bling without the sting”. But since they cost as much as the real thing, I would beg to differ.
Also, I can’t imagine they are very “green” at all, as they have to be heated to 8,000C.
That’s hotter than the temperature on the surface of the sun.
Labour's action is overdue
THIS week Sir Keir Starmer did what should have been done ages ago.
He took decisive action to demonstrate that anti-Semitism in the Labour Party will not be tolerated.Keir Starmer has finally taken decisive action and proven that anti-Semitism will not be toleratedCredit: AFP or licensors
He did this by suspending Jeremy Corbyn for his shameful response to a damning report into anti-Semitism in the party, which found there had been illegal harassment and discrimination against Jews under his leadership.
The 130-page report by the Equality & Human Rights Commission found “significant failings in the way the Labour Party has handled anti-Semitism complaints over the last four years”, with “specific examples of harassment, discrimination and political interference”.
There is only one response to a report like this – and that is to apologise profusely for the wrongs that have been committed and to demonstrate a clear intention to bring about change so they are not repeated.
Instead, continuing the theme of the his leadership, Corbyn insisted reports of anti-Semitism in the party were exaggerated.
In a statement he released, responding to the report, he said the “scale of the problem was . . . dramatically overstated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party, as well as by much of the media”.
Sir Keir’s response could not have been more decisive.
He said: “If, after all the pain, all the grief and all the evidence in this report, there are still those who think there’s no problem with anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, that it’s all exaggerated or a factional attack, then, frankly, you are part of the problem too.
"And you should be nowhere near the Labour Party either.”
Quite right too. It is shameful that this has been brushed under the carpet for so long.
Nightcap is Becks at barmiest
I CONFESS to a bit of an eye-roll at Victoria Beckham’s Instagram post of husband David enjoying a night in.
He – and she, it turned out in a subsequent post – were already dressed for bed last Wednesday, wearing matching pink silk pyjamas.Victoria Beckham gave us an insight into David's night-time routine - which apparently involves wearing a cap around the houseCredit: Instagram
But not just any old pyjamas – ones costing £350 and made by Napoleon’s old tailor.
David was watching TV and also wearing a flat cap. Victoria, 46, captioned the snap: “Charvet pajamas and a flat cap! Oh, and a little sake!”
Forget the fact they are wearing matching silk PJs, and his night-time tipple is a thimbleful of sake.
What I want to know is: Who wears a cap in the house at night?
IF you are not already watching Ted Lasso, I suggest you start.
If you don’t like American football, don’t be put off.
It is truthful, funny and uplifting. And, best of all, it turns out production for season two starts in January, with a third season already in the works.
Starring Jason Sudeikis, it is just the kind of diverting distraction we all need right now.
I, for one, can’t wait.
Helen's 50 going on 20
LOOKING at pictures of the astonishingly beautiful Helena Christensen posing in red underwear to promote the Victoria’s Secret Christmas collection, it’s hard to believe she is 51.
She looks more like 21.It's hard to believe that Helena Christensen is 51 in this stunning snapCredit: VICTORIA'S SECRET/TNI PRESS LTD
More depressing is the fact she and I are the same age . . . and the closest I have got to a G-string in recent years is on a guitar.
Kim Kardashian slammed for her ‘disgusting display of wealth’ after she brags about luxury 40th birthday without Kanye
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