How like Melania Trump, surely, was Nigel the no-mates gannet, who died on Mana Island last week, surrounded by fake birds.

She even wore a white Dior trouser suit to her husband's State of the Union speech, echoing Nigel's sleek, snowy feathers.

Talk about lonely at the top, surrounded by phonies, he with the 80 fake birds he lived among, Melania with the dreadful Donald and his lackeys, genuflecting at his every rambling utterance.

The world should be shielded from the sight of such grovelling as we pity her for being held hostage in such company. But what a soap opera. It's compulsive viewing.

Advertisement

Her body language and signature pout suggest she's really caught on to him now over the on-again off-again Stormy Daniels saga.

Much was read into her refusal to stand up with everyone else last week when Donald read a line of his scripted speech about the importance of faith and family.

I guess the comedic hypocrisy got to her. Maybe she was exhausted, too, by the physical up-and-down ritual of paying slavish homage to her errant husband by the Republicans, echoing in some hideous way the ritual of the Mass.

And she'd have been seething over Stormy getting US$130,000 ($177,500) to shut her mouth, confirmation of her worst fears about her husband.

Stormy, a porn star, seemed to vanish from the news, then reappear denying her claim of an affair, only to again reappear this past week to say that was a fake retraction, thus clinging to the initial revelation.

She and Donald, she says, shared moments of true fellow feeling, such as a mutual hatred of sharks, and discussing the Uganda situation - as Private Eye famously used to put it - without a condom. How retro.

It puts me in mind of the doomed romance of Nigel and his favourite decoy, for whom he built a nest of sticks and seaweed, and next to whom he died.

No, let's not kid ourselves: Nigel's courtship was poetic, while the Trump/Stormy arrangement was a mere financial transaction.

Money buys a lot, especially when Melania goes shopping, but it can't stop a working girl earning her place in the history of our times.

As for the famous US$51,000 coat Melania has repeatedly been criticised for wearing, I've identified it as a delicious Dolce and Gabbana thing covered in fake flowers, worn in Sicily in May last year.

She looked terrific, which is more than battle-hardened Stormy ever does. Physical labour will take its toll on a girl.

The consolation for Melania in her lonely, gilded nest is, I guess, that she at least has a terrific wardrobe, and a separate bedroom from her husband.

What's more, Donald has insisted on having a lock on his own bedroom door, an unheard-of White House request according to Michael Woolf's new book on his early presidency.

Meanwhile Melania's approval rating from Americans is well ahead of his, suggesting that people respect her dignified public silence.

I do hope there's a handsome, equally discreet young bodyguard working the White House night shift.

I can't make sense of how the President's fling with Stormy makes no difference to his adoring fans, especially as America is so embroiled in the #MeToo campaign.

Trump's friend Roger Ailes, former head of Fox News, was disgraced and tidily died after women he'd behaved grossly with spoke out. Yet while Trump boasted of equally casual groping of women, claiming they thrilled to his fame, it didn't matter with voters.

Some people who behave atrociously at least have to face their accusers in court.

American sports doctor Larry Nassar, molester of hundreds of American girl gymnasts for decades, has had to endure several gruelling court sessions while they told him what they thought of him.

Anyone who saw TV footage of the enraged father flinging himself at Nassar at one such session this past week could only cheer, and wonder why it doesn't happen more often.

Randall Hargreaves, whose three daughters were all abused by Nassar, apologised, and the judge rightly chose not to charge him with any offence. What may have offended others looked more like justice to me.

Veteran Kiwi journalist Pat Booth, who died this past week, once told me of a similar incident he witnessed in a Sydney court, when police turned their backs on a convicted paedophile for several minutes after sentencing and let the victim's father exact a personal revenge.

Dignity and restraint are always the better course, to which we should aspire.

But we are human, and sometimes provocation – as in Nassar shaking his head as one of Hargreaves' daughters gave testimony – is too great.