Anyone who thinks dying from an overdose is selfish has a weird idea of what an addict wants out of life. There comes a point at which drinking, drug use, all that - they're not fun anymore. Philip Seymour Hoffman wasn't out partying. He was alone in his bathroom, compelled. Cory Monteith in his hotel room. Chris Kelly in his living room.
Three years ago, at the age of 29, after taking up the invitation for my regular cervical screening, I received my first abnormal result. The re-test showed mild changes to the cells of my cervix and so I was referred to the hospital's colposcopy clinic for a biopsy. First thing I did? Worry myself stupid!
From Blake Lively's schnoz to Megan Fox's ongoing face transplant, celebrities as we know them are not exactly queuing up to admit to their surgery. Things couldn't be more different in Venezuela, where, on the contrary, a new nose, some porcelain teeth and cheek implants are somewhat of a status symbol, in a nation where facial bandages are worn with pride.
Philip Seymour Hoffman, an actor whose work I enjoyed very much, died this week, apparently from a drug overdose. The efforts to get rid of unpleasant feelings and to replace them with pleasant ones can take a powerful toll on a human life.
So another life is lost, to be blamed on the use of heroin. Thus the so-called "war on drugs" will be perpetuated. The lessons of prohibition - that it is the criminality, not the drug, that does the real damage - will remain unlearnt.
We like brilliant men to be brilliant at all times and so we brush aside any indication that brilliant men might, like us ordinary men, be capable of brokenness, which means men like Hoffman and Heath Ledger before him, though richly brilliant, often end up dying the impoverished death of broken men who have been impossibly fractured by some intimate failure.
Beyoncè made front pages the world over this week, thanks to her seriously raunchy Grammys' performance with husband Jay-Z, with columnists getting their knickers in a twist (pun intended) over the appropriateness, or not, of her La Perla ribbons and Saint Laurent sparkly tights. On the HuffPost blog, however, the heat wasn't about Bey's outfit, but the lyrics instead. Writer and rape victim charity worker Ellie Slee demanded to know why a reference to Tina Turner suffering domestic abuse at the hands of Ike Turner wasn't omitted for the performance...
At a Q and A for 12 Years A Slave in London this week, Director Steve McQueen told the story of one of his first meetings in Hollywood, how an Irish person had been expected... and about the shock when he showed up. I would like to take this small opportunity to celebrate some people who have brought some exquisite flavour to the UK, Vanity Fair Style.
When I heard 'Same Love' for the first time, it blew me away. I had never heard anything like it, and I never hoped to imagine hearing anything like it in my lifetime. The fact that it was by a straight man, whatever his colour, made those words all the more pertinent and, for me, touching.
If you asked the general public whether they believed in charity the overwhelming response would be yes. Of course charities do good work; no one can deny that charities help tens of thousands of vulnerable people in all manner of difficult situations. However, most of the mainstream charities and NGOs have become corporatised, choosing relationships with corporates and government instead of grassroots social change movements.
Entertainment industry celebrities have a habit of popping up and declaring their political ambitions at various stages in the electoral cycle. Often it is a sincerely held belief about a set of issues, occasionally ego, that drives them, though perhaps it could be a desire to gain publicity for other ventures...
I'm getting ready to embark on a three week tour of Germany, with performer Ryan Sheridan, and I realised I don't really have a working suitcase any more. I think I've been hibernating since Christmas. So, it's about time I made a list of on-the-road-again must-haves. Flights, epic car journeys, travel sickness, and a show a night... I just need to be comfy!
It appears that hating Taylor Swift is one of the internet's favourite hobbies. Just Google her name and you're hit with a virtual tsunami of fierce hatred... But here's the thing. Hatred for Taylor Swift seems entirely arbitrary. Nobody appears able to properly justify trolling her, or disliking her. Substitute any other young pop star into any of the above-described scenarios and the public reaction would have been completely different.
What shocked me was seeing Beyonce being all sexy with her husband, Jay-Z, who features in the song and shared the stage with her. Hot monogamy? Now that's not something you see every day.
Let's go back to the beginning and start with Madonna and me. Against what some people think is the gay 'stereotype', I'm not really one of her fans. However, my actions after watching her arrival on the red carpet and then performance, I played true to stereotype and took to social media to comment on her appearance.
Beyonce: when you smile affectionately and sing along with that lyric, you are propagating a cycle of humiliation, of rape, of violence that is still horrifically real for women all over the world.