What it takes to shock an old broad has probably changed a little over the years.
It seems, when you consider the Jenny Joseph poem, A Warning, that once upon a time it was enough to wear purple and a red hat that didn't quite go together. These days it's a little harder. But not much.
It's clear from the press coverage of the recent naked photographs of 71-year-old Vivienne Westwood, alabaster skinned and shock-orange-haired in a current Juergen Teller exhibition, that it doesn't take a lot. All you have to do is take your clothes off.
Teller describes how he was at her house on a Sunday evening, marvelling at how wonderful her skin was, when he expressed that he was "curious about how she would look naked".
"And then," he recalls, "when she said, 'OK, let's do it,' and she was sitting there I was thinking, 'Hell, man!' I didn't quite expect it. So that was great."
Westwood is not the only old shocker out there. Others do exist, it's just there don't seem to be many of them in the media.
Possibly my favourite piece of entertainment telly of last year was watching Miriam Margoyles, also in her early 70s, on the Graham Norton show, rendering Will.i.am and Greg Davies speechless with her rude tales, some of which are probably unprintable here. (When she appeared on a previous Norton show, Stanley Tucci was so shocked by her anecdotes he asked if he could be "put on a show that was actually going to air".) Perhaps the only one mentionable was her story of how, when some painters at the BBC were laughing at her breasts as she ran, she walked right up to them and placed their hands on her bosom. Priceless. Why stick to wearing purple?
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