Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Gill Diet

I was so sorry to read of the death of AA Gill. Some people in my family say that I shouldn't be sorry, because of the baboon incident, which was vile, I agree. However, who among us has not made dire mistakes and done cruel things that we then choose to forget about or justify to ourselves?

Cast not the first stone, and all that.

My feeling is that the man spread more joy than sorrow. Sure he gave offence - but is offence really the most appalling thing in the world? These days, some people genuinely seem to believe that it is, but I don't.

So I'm grateful AA Gill existed and sad that he is gone. Apart from feeling natural sympathy for his family, purely selfishly I would like to be able to go on reading new articles by him. There are so many things that he wrote that made me laugh an extraordinary amount. I wish there were going to be more.

Anyway, looking at some recordings of him talking, I have discovered that, like me, Gill also devised a diet. It is, of course, a far, far better diet than my one, (virtually any diet would be). Here it is, transcribed from a talk a few years ago, given somewhere in London, (I think):

"Diets are nonsense. What you need are manners. We are taught far too much about what we eat and not anything like enough about how we eat. The rules are:

Never eat standing up;
Never drink from a cup that you are going to throw away;
Never eat from a plate that goes straight into the bin;
Always eat sitting at a table;
Always eat with a knife and fork;
Always eat off pottery or china;
Never eat at a desk;
Never eat in front of a screen;
Eat three times a day and no more;
Never eat in the street;
Never eat out of a packet."


  1. I'm also sorry that Gill is Gone. However I like your diet much better than his, which is surprisingly inelegant. Commandments 1, 7 and 10, for example, are covered by 4. 3 and 11, by 6.

    1. I love the idea that anything involving the burping of the theme tune to Z cars could be more elegant than anything said or written by Gill. In his defence, he was speaking off the cuff, rather than writing and also I think good pedagogy probably involves repetition as your listeners may not be listening as attentively as they ought to at all times