I do not necessarily wish to imply I have the gift of prophecy. But this is either uncanny or part of some cosmic plan to aggravate me.
Three years ago on an edition of Question Time, alongside the then Olympics minister Tessa Jowell, the panel was asked whether we regretted bidding for the Olympics (since a recession had come along afterwards). I said that I had never been terribly in favour of getting the Olympics, not because of the expense or because our athletes wouldn’t do our nation proud (as they more than have) but because of how bad we in Britain had become at selling ourselves as a culture.
I referenced the beautiful closing ceremony of the Athens Olympics, which included a recording of Maria Callas, the finale of Mahler 3 and a reading from George Seferis. My fear, I said, was that the British closing ceremony would consist of another reunion of the Spice Girls.
Imagine my surprise, then, when I read this.
Give something clever this Christmas – a year’s subscription to The Spectator for just £75. And we’ll give you a free bottle of champagne. Click here.