A US correspondent writes to ask just how badly Labour did in the council elections on Thursday. For tactical reasons (ha ha ha) I have been forbidden until now to share with PooterGeekers just how terribly the election campaign has been going. Now that I can, the thesaurus on my desk is not helping. I'll just share with you the record that it's probably going to be the first time a governing party has finished third in UK local elections.

I was one of our three candidates in “Cambridge Market”. Labour expected this seat to be unwinnable. I didn't let the party down, reducing our share of the vote there from 11.9 percent to 10.3 percent [you have to scroll down about halfway]. We were beaten by Liberal Democrats, Tories, Greens and Independents—the last probably promoting manifestos promising tax-funded compulsory limb amputation for all. I was amused to note that my former rowing coach was also standing in this Lib Dem stronghold. He's a Tory who drives around town in a classic Jag. Despite the surname “Ionides”, when he speaks he sounds Greek in the same way that Philip Mountbatten sounds Greek. He also got about 18 percent of the vote.

It's the European election results next. I can't wait.