There’s almost no point in mentioning Piers Morgan’s recent comments about Daniel Craig on a website for Dads. Almost, but not quite.
In case there’s anyone out there in Dadland too busy washing / changing / feeding / taxiing / playing with their offspring to have caught up with this important tale (and there are, I imagine, plenty of heads nodding in agreement here), the television show host and former newspaper editor suggested that the still in situ James Bond was somehow emasculating himself by being paparazzi-snapped transporting his brand new daughter in a baby carrier strapped to his chest.
Encouragingly and unsurprisingly, Mr Morgan was roundly condemned for his tweet “Oh 007.. not you as well?!!! #papoose #emasculatedBond”. This is, after all, the 21st century, where, as we all know very well, fathers are considered an integral and active part of the nuclear family. Though, for all we know, perhaps not in the Morgan household.
To be honest, there are so many places we could go with this one – all of which have probably been covered. It would be lots of fun to point out the irony of a middle-aged, overweight TV sofa warrior criticising an all-action acting superstar (and one who winds up with one or two beauties per movie when he’s not cuddling up to actual wife and fellow-acting superstar Rachel Weisz) for his lack of masculinity.
But, tempting though a soft target is, I think we need to consider a more important issue here. We know that Mr Morgan likes to flaunt his friendship with the stars (well, Donald Trump and Kevin Pietersen) and to broadcast far and wide his dislike of other public figures (viz. Gary Lineker, Arsene Wenger).
We know, also, that his appearances on the ITV wake-up show Good Morning Britain are pock-marked with offensive comments guaranteed to provoke fellow-host Susanna Reid into silent indignation or a well-honed put-down.
Indeed, you might think there’s an inflated ego at play here. At times it seems as if there’s no admired or beloved icon Mr Morgan won’t attempt to shoot down in flames – even though he knows the return of fire will be exponentially greater.
I guess it’s all about publicity; drawing attention to himself, to his TV programme, to his lifestyle. And as a one-time tabloid big cheese, he knows well the value of an outrageous comment.
Perhaps the best thing we could all do would be to ignore him – deny him the oxygen of publicity etc and hope that his candle just fizzles out.
I’m inclined to a different view, though. I think what poor old Piers is suffering from is simple, old-fashioned inadequacy. He probably hasn’t come to terms with the march of time and the need to focus on making your own way in the world, rather than doing down those who might seem better at ‘the game’.
So what he needs is our sympathy and understanding. And a great big hug of reassurance. In fact what he would probably love more than anything, is to be swaddled in a papoose and strapped tightly to a lovely, broad, manly chest where he could soothe himself to the rhythm of a deep voice and some deep breathing. I wonder whether Daniel Craig would be up to the job…