Remember Giles Coren? Believe it or not, about ten to fifteen years ago he used to be funny. I used to nab my parents’ copy of the Times on a Saturday, and giggle to myself as I read his restaurant reviews. He would spend the majority of the ‘review’ wanging on about whatever took his fancy, and only get to the food, almost tangentially, in the last paragraph. He would also write droll columns on stuff like, you know, how we should tax fat people extra. I know, I know. Hilarious, right?
Now, I don’t know whether he has changed or I have changed (both, probably), but he is not at all funny anymore. I think the rot started to creep in, as with so many of us, when he got married and had kids. He became incredibly smug, and started going on about how amazing his daughter was. (Well done man, you successfully propagated your genes! Big fucking whoop.) He also became more right wing, bemoaning political correctness and ‘snowflakes’. One of his most moronic moments came when he described football as “just a bunch of grown men chasing a ball around a field.”* This is the kind of thing you hear a lot from football-sceptics, and it is absurd. You may as well describe a car as “just a sort of steerable oblong on wheels” or a restaurant as “just a big room where you go and sit on a chair and put items into your face.” Or a Giles Coren article as “just a glorified piece of toilet paper.” Ho ho ho.
Be this as it may, the apotheosis of Coren’s idiocy surely arrived when he came out with a ridiculous piece of nonsense on the theme of bananas. He said that he loved bananas, “because they taste like cake.”* Bananas taste like cake in the sense that piss smells like bacon – you can kind of discern the similarity, if you squint very hard through your monocle, but all in all the resemblance is extremely tenuous, the main difference being that, in each comparison, one of the ‘comparands’ is delicious, whilst the other one is terrible. You see, I have always hated bananas. They are either sweet but intolerably gooey, like chowing down on a bar of slightly hardened sick, or they are firm but tasteless. The thought of eating a banana is a about as appealing as munching wet polystyrene.
Or so I thought. I eat bananas every now and again, going by the logic that the degree to which I dislike a foodular item is probably positively correlated with the degree to which it is healthy. Early today I had a banana epiphany. On top of my microwave lay an overripe banana, with them brown marks on it. I don’t get paid for this blog, so I was of course hungry. I thought to myself “why not pinch your nose, swallow your pride, and eat that banana?” Ladies and gentlemen: I ate that banana. And it was kind of amazing. Sweet and buttery. Let it be known that this is NOT a review of bananas per se. This is a review of that one specific banana. There is another banana on top of the microwave as we speak; I don’t think I can bring myself to eat it. No future banana experience will ever live up to the one I had this morning. In fact, the only banana experience that will ever come close will be the day Coren gets one up his hairy, sanctimonious fundament.
The banana I ate this morning: 9/10
All other bananas, ever: 1/10
*I’ve just googled the quote and I can’t find it. What’s he gonna do, sue us? What I did find, however, was a whole heap of other nonsense which makes me dislike him even more: women comedians ‘not being funny’; how his ‘biggest fear’ is his four-year-old son being overweight. What an arsecandle.
**again, a perfunctory googling will not yield the quote. But I’m pretty sure he said it. In fact, to borrow the words of the great philosopher Harry Kane, I’d swear on my daughter’s life.