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Michael Winner’s regret at avoiding national service by pretending to be gay

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  1. That There Other David 21 Jan 2013, 5:16pm

    Although he undoubtedly rubbed a lot of people up the wrong way (as did some of his opinions) Winner was a real character. We don’t have too many real characters around these days. Ah well, we all have to go eventually, and at least he enjoyed himself whilst here.

  2. Dan Filson 21 Jan 2013, 5:31pm

    I thank God that national service ended just a year or so before I left school. Sure I could march in step, and iron a uniform, but the pointlessness of a lot of national service was a waste of a couple of years in the lives of several generations of young people. Good on Winner for cheating his way out of it.

    1. I did my national service in France. It only stopped recently – under Chirac.

  3. It sounds like his regret was pretty sarcastic.

    Any reason to get out of national service would have been a good reason.

  4. David Boothroyd 21 Jan 2013, 6:31pm

    Another who got out of National Service in a similar way was the theatre critic Kenneth Tynan. He usually wore long flowing feminine clothes anyway, so made sure to do so when called in for his medical test for the Army. He also drenched himself in Yardley perfume. He was rejected as ‘medically unfit for service’. Tynan went on to be one of the 20th century’s most prolific heterosexuals.

    (By contrast, in the USA, people claiming to be gay when drafted were generally assumed to be faking it to get out of military service)

    I would have thought Winner’s beautiful takedown of Richard Littlejohn from LWT in 1995 was worthy of note.

    1. vversatile 21 Jan 2013, 8:18pm

      And here it is on Youtube.

  5. Conscription / National Service is outright evil.

    ANY lie to avoid it is acceptable.

    1. de Villiers 21 Jan 2013, 10:23pm

      I don’t agree. I did the national service in France as a French citizen of the Republic.

  6. Ummm… he pretended to be gay back then?

    I guess all the industry gossip about him and an assistant in the 1970s,’80s and ’90s was wrong, then.

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