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Not biased or anything… but here are some facts about Nick Clegg

No policis on paxtonvic, oh no – but incase any of you are wondering about Nick Clegg since his ratings soared after the first televised debate… here is everything you might  want to know – courtesy of  timesonline…

10 things you didn’t know about Nick Clegg

There’s more to the Liberal Democrat leader than Quality Street ties, 30-ish lovers and one leaders debate in the bag. Ten things, to be exact *.


1. He wrote a novel

But not just any novel – “impenetrable, pretentious garbage” (his words, not ours). He told Mumsnet in January, “I’d just read a book without any punctuation (Garcia Marquez I think) so I tried to mimic that style.” Sadly, it was never published, but a shiny pound to anyone who can write an “as imagined by” for our holiday read. Hugo? You listening?

2. He’s a cactus arsonist

While on a school exchange in Munich, 16-year-old Clegg got drunk and set fire to a professor’s rare collection of cacti. On return to England, the chastened teenager had to spend the summer hunting down replacements. He later blamed the state he was in on the local beer, brewed in monasteries: “Unbelievably strong. Which clearly I couldn’t take.” It’s called Kloster Andechs if you’re into that sort of thing.

3. He’s Bullingdon material

With aristocratic Russian ancestry and a public school background (how oiky is Westminster compared to Eton, Dave?) the only thing stopping Clegg getting into the notorious Oxford drinking club was the fact he went to, er, Cambridge. He was even a Tory for a time. Cambridge University Conservative Association records cite an “N Clegg” of Robinson College as member between 1986-87 and there was only one N Clegg at the college. The Lib Dem leader says he can’t remember anything about this, citing fresher’s week fervour and a poor memory.

4. He’s the only ‘out’ atheist leader

With most leaders dancing the tango of coy avoidance when discussing religion, Clegg is the only English political leader to state that he doesn’t believe in God. Luckily for religious base-covering, his wife Miriam is raising their three children as Catholics.

5. He could have been a very different sort of hack

On graduating from university, Clegg worked as a trainee journalist under Christopher Hitchens in New York. After doing a second Masters in Brussels, where he met Miriam, he won a Financial Times scholarship to report on industrial privations in Hungary. But journalism wasn’t for him: he worked developing aid programmes and as a EU policy adviser and speech writer, before becoming an MEP in 1999.


(Pic: PA. Nick Clegg and wife Miriam González Durántez)

6. He’s a rule breaker

In June last year, Clegg caused a Parliamentary fluster when he broke an unwritten rule and became the first leader in modern political history to call for the resignation of the Speaker. The last time this happened was in 1695. Fortunately for Clegg, Michael Martin reacted to this faux-pas with grace, standing down a month later after pressure from MPs.

7. He’s got a silver tongue

The son of a Dutch mother and half-Russian father, Clegg was brought up bilingual. As well as Dutch and English, he speaks French, German and Spanish – “I speak German the worst”. In 2000 he married long-term girlfriend Miriam in Spain, in what sounds like the most fun political wedding in history. The party went on until 7am and she made everyone hot chocolate afterwards. Their three children have Spanish first names to balance their English surname.

8. He’s a secret thesp

At Cambridge, Clegg acted opposite Helena Bonham-Carter in a play about AIDS and counts the soon-to-be ex-Mr Kate Winslet, Sam Mendes, among his friends. He’s also a star of the Sheffield pantomime scene: his roles while MP include Sleeping Beauty’s prince and the slightly more modest part of a health-and-safety inspector checking the structural integrity of Jack’s beanstalk.

9. He loves his food

We know more about Nick Clegg’s food choices than anyone probably should: the man went to Carluccio’s for a quick dinner with Miriam on the eve of the election, and, thanks to Biscuitgate we have two options to buy in should he ever pop round for tea. Here’s the Clegg shopping list:

Biscuits: Rich Tea “when dunked” in tea and Hob Nobs “when not dunked”.

Weirdest meal: “Fried bees in China”

Snacking: “I have a biscuit tin and a fruit bowl in my office, and I always eat the biscuits first.”

Breakfast: “Porridge”

Fruit: “Mangoes”

10. He’s a fan of chilling out

While on a road trip with TV presenter Louis Theroux and his brother Marcel, Clegg caused much mirth by insisting on stopping the car twice a day for 20 minutes of transcendental meditation. “People may mock,” he says, “but I found it an extremely good way to deal with the stresses of ordinary life.” The reason he started meditating in the first place? When he was writing Clegg fact #1, that terrible novel.

Wonder how this week will pan out…. I will try to find 10 facts about Gordon Brown and David Cameron if I get a free few moments..

April 25, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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