The popular music singer, also known as George Michael, has been jailed for driving whilst under the influence of drugs. After a string of similar convictions the outcome was inevitable. According to one report, Mr Panayiotou "kept repeating, 'I can't believe this has happened to me" through a veil of tears and self-pity.
I fully believe his incredulity. Some readers will remember the case of Howard Hughes, the billionaire aviator, film producer and corporation chief. His final years were spent in hotel suites, surrounded by fawning lackys who catered, at a price, to his every whim. The problem was, Hughes' whims were self-destructive; he ended up terrified of germs, confined to darkened hotel rooms, unwashed and living on a diet of Campbell's chicken soup. He had a unique way of firing staff. His method was to fire them, but "keep them on the payroll". In that way he ensured that facts about his bizarre life would not emerge fully until after his death.
George Michael has paid off everyone around him. Even his boyfriend is unlikely to criticise him for his gay cruising activities since he is very much a kept man, getting £1 million as a birthday present. To George, it is "George needs this, George needs that. George would like a room with a parakeet in it that can sing Wake me up before you go-go" And of course, George gets it. He has been spoiled beyond belief. There is no wonder, then that his present demeanour is one of astonishment.
I wonder about these hangers on, the entourage; the sycophantic few who tell George he is just fabulous darling. Until recently, money and fame kept George Michael in a bubble that can only be described as very destructive. The bubble has burst. I don't suppose they do riders in jail. For the next week or two, George may find his requests for chocolate Smarties fall on very stony ground. And that sad thing is, he will not understand why.