Belfast Telegraph

Sharpen the axe for CBB chopping block

By Frances Burscough

After the season of goodwill grinds to a halt, there follows the most depressing fortnight of the whole year. Yes, apparently it’s a well-documented fact that everyone hates the beginning of January. But I’m not among them. I have a fondness for the bleak mid-winter for a number of reasons.

First I’ll tell you the truly worthy one, followed by the most unworthy of them all.

I always buy a real Christmas tree every year and, because it can cost anything from  £30 upwards, I always make sure I get every penny’s worth out of it. So after the decorations are down and the house is back to normal, my boys and I spend an evening chopping it up into firewood and filling the house once again with that delicious scent of alpine sap. Despite the mess, the pleasure of creating a mountain of fresh logs and branches, which will roar and spit with such a spectacular display of son et lumière is as much of a joy for me as dressing the tree in the first place.

That’s the log fire sorted, just in time for my guilty January pleasure, something to watch in front of it. Just when a huge vacuum like a black hole appears in your life after Christmas, oh joy of joys, we have Celebrity Big Brother to look forward to every night.

It may not be fashionable or even politically correct to admit this, but I love CBB and I don’t care who knows it.

As usual, the criticisms are flowing freely in the press but I won’t be joining in. Quite frankly, I find it riveting.

Although many may laugh out loud at my reasoning, I still consider the concept of throwing strangers together in a cramped environment for an extended period of time under incessant and close scrutiny as a fascinating experiment which gives us a rare insight into human behaviour in extreme and unnatural conditions.

Add to that the inflated egos of the celebrity psyche and the ogle-factor which we all possess and it makes for brilliantly entertaining viewing.

At the time of writing this, the new season has only just begun and we have been given but a brief glimpse of the entrants.

In case you haven’t been watching it thus far, here’s the current line-up of so-called celebs and has-beens on the chopping block this time round and to make things easier,  I’ve put in brackets the reason why they’re famous.

1. Gemma Collins (Essex girl with a big bake and even bigger boobs)

2. Kristina Rihanoff (Strictly Russian dancer and femme fatale for of all her partners)

3. Darren Day (Notorious love-rat star of stage and screen and the I’m a Celebrity jungle)

4. Daniella Westbrook (Troubled EastEnders star whose septum accidentally disappeared right from under her very nose)

5.  David Gest (weird-looking but funny ex of Liza Minelli)

6. Nancy Dell’Olio (weird-looking but not remotely funny ex of Sven Goran Erickson)

7. Winston McKenzie (never ’eard of him)

8. Christopher Maloney (never ’eard of him either, although he looks like he’s had some work done on the facial department)

9. Angie Bowie (that’s more like it, a proper celebrity with a fascinating past)

10. Megan McKenna (Er ... sorry, doesn’t ring any bells)

11. Stephanie Davis (Hollyoaks actress, apparently. Don’t watch it because I’m not that much of a moron)

12. John Partridge (cool guy off EastEnders. (Phwoarr)

13. Scottie T (womanising bed-hopping ladies-man off Geordie Shore. Ughhhh)

14.  Jeremy McConnell (tattooed all-over male model and former Mr Ireland)

15. Jonathan Cheban (Er ... who he? It seems he’s not famous in his own right, but he’s close friends with Kim Kardashian, who isn’t famous in her own right but is famous for being famous)

16. Tiffany Pollard (Er ... er ... who, now?)

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