Monitor was as shocked as anyone to hear that one of the royal family had revealed some opinions. Wasn't it enough that the Countess of Wessex had a modish hairstyle, a day job and a hunky husband to boot? But what's this? Our friends at The Guardian are among thousands queuing up to offer advice to our Soph.
'The Countess of Wessex emerges as a woman of unexceptional views and an undeveloped sense of discretion, ' proffers a Guardian leader, with fear of neither pots nor kettles. 'If the case for the royal family is that they are dedicated public servants, then they should concentrate a bit more on public service. Now she is stepping down as chairman of her company, Ms Rhys-Jones should find plenty of uses for her PR skills in places such as the British Council or. . . [wait for it] the NHS. ' Monitor seconds the nomination! The Department of Health press office would be so much more fun if staff could take a leaf out of Sophie's (open) book.
Now, if anyone knows about PR, It is Monitor's fave Tory MP. Whenever Dr Liam Fox has a thought - and sometimes just before - he is overcome by an uncontrollable urge to disseminate it - usually by e-mail. The poor man just can't help himself. As one of the many objects of Dr Fox's affection, Monitor was at first flattered by the fevered attentions dressed up as press releases.
In the latest, Dr Fox attacks the way 'health ministers have scandalously wasted some£1m of public money on glossy political spin' (That is morale-boosting NHS Magazine and Bradford health action zone's efforts to tackle urban deprivation, to you). 'Put patients before propaganda!' the glorious doctor soundbites (you can see why he can't wait to get his ideas across). Monitor attempted to open four further e-mails intended to hammer the message home, but, alas, the Tory propaganda crashed his somewhat elderly computer.
Finally, those smutmasters in sexual health are at it again! The British HIV Association has a perfectly sensible name. So why the need for acronyms? Particularly one which has sparked inexplicable laughter among Monitor's junior colleagues. 'BHIVA on Brighton Beach' shouts a press release, alerting us to their annual conference. Monitor is getting too old for all this.