MONDAY: Scary Paula and the Chuckle Brothers, together at last. Here they are, a triumvirate of grim fun in meeting room 434, explaining how free schools and celebrities are made for each other. "If it was up to me, Paul ...," says Barry. "Up to you, Barry ...," says Paul. "EVERY school would be free ..." "To me, Paul?" "To you, Barry. And to me." "To me?" "To you." After the Chuckles have left, clumsily carrying a length of shelving, Paula drops the bomb. "We're trimming Conceptual Input. Our aim is to have 30 per cent less thinking in this Department by the summer ...". She looks first at me and then at Sandra, with an imperious, sugary squint.
TUESDAY: Gobwhack! Sandra's been BINNED. So this is what a cutback feels like: OK if it's not you. Sandra's holiday leave swamps her statutory notice, so technically she left a fortnight ago. Big, boozy goodbye lunch. She seems elated, actually. On wine #4 she reveals that she's going to be a teacher. Of what, we're all wondering, aloud. "I will be teaching presentational and marketing skills. At primary level." That, we all agree, aloud, goes without saying. She has no teaching qualification "as such", but the prospective head told her she had total freedom, as corporate training looks bloody great on the prospectus.
WEDNESDAY: Missing Sandra already. AND the 25 others who've gone from Project Blue Sky. It means more brainstorming with the insufferable prick Owen Kenobe, expert in Jazz Psychometrics, historian Heavy Si Schama, Toby I Want To Smack His Face Young, some hyperactive Tory poster girl with mad hair, and a preening gaggle of Chuckletastic wankers from the world of showbiz. The shrieking stops when Scary Paula walks in. We're all to present a Good Idea to promote free schools tomorrow. The person who comes up with the shittest idea is out.
THURSDAY: Kenobe's idea is to have jazz as an alternative to Latin in special Free Jazz Schools. Schama wants houses, each named after a 20th-century leader, with pupils in the appropriate military uniform. Smackable Face suggests a TV show called Come Teach With Me: five contestants host an education-themed dinner party and try to cook up the most exotic curriculum. Tory Girl calls for A Greater Emphasis on Discipline, as usual; as long as she keeps saying it they won't ditch HER. The showbizzers all say they'll make a donation and have a free school named after them. I present my idea - public sector to provide premises for free schools, private sector responsible for comprehensives - then realise it's been done. Bollocks.
FRIDAY: Ha ha! Schama's out! And fair enough. Who'd want to be in "Hitler House"? Idiot.
As intercepted by Ian Martin.