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Monday, May 19, 2008

Gok Wan has a lot to answer for. On the last edition of 'How To Look Good Naked' (which obviously I don't need to watch), he personally instructed Lisa to go out and buy a bottle of Ambre Solaire No Streaks Bronzer, for the perfect cancer-free tan. She applied it before we went to bed last night. I'm not saying the results were unexpected, but her first words to me this morning were "Oh no". And I could hear them through my earplugs.

I spent the first part of the morning negotiating for the photographic rights, sadly to no avail. But picture a Friesian cow with a panicked expression, and you're halfway there. It's true that where Lisa's applied the stuff, she has an even golden tan with no streaks. The problem is that because the spray is colourless and takes a few hours to develop, she couldn't see all the bits she'd missed. She looks like an Appaloosa. Or possibly an Oompa Loompa. With a skin condition. If you're in Brighton today and want to recognise her, she's the one wearing a long-sleeved top and gloves. If we'd had a balaclava, she'd be wearing that too. You have to laugh. I know I did.

Anyhoo, I helped her apply some more to her white patches this morning, then e-mailed her at 11am to ask what colour she is now. She replied with one word: Bisto.

As for yesterday afternoon, well I know I shouldn't say this after Dave's comment, but Professor Susan Greenfield really was wearing quite an extraordinary outfit. I couldn't work out if it was shorts or a miniskirt. But either way, she is one foxy neuroscientist. I may have to replace the poster of Joan Bakewell on my bedroom wall.

Anyway, I was expecting a lecture, but it turned out to be the Baroness in conversation with Radio 4's answer to Frazier, Laurie Taylor. He reminded me of Boris Johnson crossed with Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'. Only slightly less sane. It was all very interesting though, and the essential message seemed to be that it's not the number of brain cells you have, it's the connections between them. And in order to grow more connections, it's apparantly vital to get out there and interact with the world, instead of sitting in front of a computer screen.

So in the spirit of advanced neuroscience, Lisa and I have agreed to go out again tonight. One of Lisa's work colleagues has recently formed a theatre group, written a play, and is appearing in a small way on the Brighton Festival fringe. Which makes her sound like a nit. But as culture vultures who are easily persuaded by half a dozen pestering e-mails, we've said we'll tag along for opening night. Although with Lisa's skin, there won't be many people looking at the stage.