CHOIR-preacher Johann Hari has dismissed claims of plagiarism during a fantasy interview where he pretended he was talking to Michael Parkinson.
The columnist sat down in his living room last night, facing an empty chair and answered questions Parkinson had asked Muhammad Ali, David Niven and Billy Connolly in a series of memorable interviews in the mid to late 1970s.
The criticism came after Hari used a revolutionary new interview
technique that involved pretending people had said things to him and
then imagining what his reaction would have been if they had have said
those things to him, which they did not and in fact said to somebody
else years ago.
Stopping occasionally for imagined laughter and applause, Hari used Parkinson’s question to Niven about what it was like being friends with Errol Flynn to insist that the famed Hollywood hellraiser would have done exactly the same thing if he had been lucky enough to work for a newspaper that no-one reads.
Nodding at the chair, he added: “You know Michael, I have made a lot of enemies because I love the NHS and feminism and I suspect that’s what this is really all about. Much as I said in my latest book That’s What This Is Really All About.”
Independent editor Simon Kelner later joined Hari on the fantasy Parkinson set were he told the invisible Yorkshireman: “Johann has a scrupulous commitment to the kind of thoughts you’d generally hear in the presence of hummus and would never be deliberately dishonest as long as one uses a highly specialised definition of the word that is only shown to Britain’s most important columnists.”
Meanwhile full-time Twitter cretin Nikki Hollis defended Hari, adding: “Other journalists do much worse things than telling outright lies, such as telling outright lies to support views I don’t like.
“And he has nice hair and once retweeted a comment of mine so I won’t hear a word said against him, regardless of how accurate those words may be.”
Kelner later imagined he was being asked Parkinson’s question to
Muhammad Ali about George Foreman but answered it as if he was talking
about Toby Young, the Telegraph’s award-winning anti-hair polemicist.