How have you been? You bring me some miserable memories these days, but you also bring Strictly Come Dancing and legitimise the wearing of tights, so I suppose I'll let you stick around. It's a little known fact that I have full control of the months of the year. Depending on how I do with those, They're going to try me out on the seasons next.
I know what you're thinking as we contemplate the passage of the year. Some of you will be brooding on what has become of your life and all the wide-eyed, wonder-struck dreams of your youth. But realistically most of you are thinking, 'There hasn't been a lame reader-interactive Why Miss Jones competition for a while. When, oh when, will I get the chance to compete for some cack-handed homemade prizes?'
Well, my friends, that particular boat has well and truly come in. RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW.
The all-new WMJ competition relates to Strictly Come Dancing, which I know is of little interest to a significant proportion of the hardcore WMJ readership, but is of MASSIVE OBSESSIVE interest to a large amount of seasonal WMJ traffic.
The contest is a skilfull deconstruct of Strictly host Sir Bruce Forsyth's Play Your Cards Right, in that you most definitely do get something for a pair in this game. You must predict which recently announced celebrity contestant will be paired with which pro dancer before the 'big reveal' show on Saturday evening. You may want to consider things like compatibility of height, build, whether the pro deserves a better/worse partner than the donkey/super-dancer they had last year and the pair's showmance potential. Or you may just want to guess.
Using the 'Contact me' link on the left, you need to email me your 14 predicted partnerships. The winner will be the person who correctly guesses the most pairs – I'm essentially a traditionalist, so it's a pretty classic contest in that respect. But that's not all. As a bonus question, and possible tie-breaker (and here I'm making a colossal assumption that more than one person will enter), you must predict which celebrity will be the first to say they are going to give it 'x' per cent, where 'x' is a figure in excess of 100, during Saturday's launch show. You must also guess the value of 'x'.
Now don't bore us, get to the chorus. And by 'chorus', I mean 'prizes'. It/they is/are [a] unique, bespoke, highly collectable piece[s] of Strictly merchandise, lovingly crafted by me. Money literally can't buy these prizes, not least because they don't exist yet. I might get my friend Miss L to help me. She doesn't know this yet. But we'd all be in safer hands that way because she made this.
Let's recap. Send me:
*The name of the first percentage overstater, and the percentage.
*Your favourite Strictly professional dancer (this information will relate to your bespoke prize, should you win).
Your entry must reach my inbox by 5pm on Saturday 10 September. You can find a useful list of all the pros and celebs at the bottom of this post.
You may suggest that BBC employees have an unfair advantage. They probably do. But a) I think it's unlikely that any of them are reading this, and b) I know what the prizes are and, with that in mind, I'm not sure an advantage is actually, like, an advantage in this case.
Following the launch show on Saturday, I will post some ill-formed and prematurely judgmental thoughts on the contestants. The hardcore WMJ Strictly non-tolerators will particularly look forward to this, I know. One of my initial impressions is that there are no EastEnders involved. Probably because last year they witnessed Scott Maslen reduced to a walking cadaver by the demands of the show – or the demands of Natalie – and vowed never to be that hollow-eyed bag of bones. Some people have no sense of adventure.
CELEBRITIES Men: Harry Judd, Russell Grant, Robbie Savage, Audley Harrison, Rory Bremner, Dan Lobb, Jason Donovan
Women: Lulu, Holly Valance, Nancy Dell'Olio, Edwina Currie, Chelsee Healey, Alex Jones,
PROFESSIONALS Men: Brendan Cole, Anton du Beke, James Jordan, Vincent Simone, Robin Windsor, Artem Chigvintsev, Pasha Kovalev (new dancer referred to by Len Goodman on The One Show as 'Pasha the Siberian tiger')
Women: Katya Virshilas, Flavia Cacace, Ola Jordan, Erin Boag, Aliona Vilani, Kristina Rihanoff, Natalie Lowe
38. QUEEN ELIZABETH OLYMPIC PARK, LONDON
11 months ago