Fear and Loathing of Humpty Dumpty

23rd March 2018 12

‘Frontiers are the most porous parts of any polity,’ a beautiful bit of English heard on David Cannadine’s radio feature, ‘Civilisation, A Sceptic’s Guide.’ The programme is voiced by highly educated, presumably well-off middle-class English people, including women who decry British culture as something retrograde and lamentable. Along with Cannadine they believe that ‘civilisation’ cannot be judged by culture, and … [Read on]

Hugging can now be a criminal offence

17th March 2018 15

In the distant past, perhaps twenty years ago, the world was very different, almost unknowable. A glance at old TV ads on U-tube are a revelation and less trouble than making a laborious trip to the Natural History Museum in London to see dinosaur bones. One of the most startling is for Impulse Body Spray, popular throughout the 1980s. An … [Read on]

Raped while eating a Mac

23rd February 2018 12

The Department of Health recently reported that ‘Ultra-processed’ foods may be linked to cancer. These included pot noodles, ready meals, cakes and confectionery with long lists of additives, preservatives, flavourings, sugar, fat and salt. These now account for half of all the food bought by UK families. This followed a D of H warning the previous January, that nearly a … [Read on]

Allergies are breeding like Rabbits

12th February 2018 6

I’m as liberal as the next person – but there are limits. A new film based on Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter, a lady of the utmost probity, shows Peter’s young relations pelting a man with blackberries, even though they know – get this, they know the man (who we should now properly call ‘the victim’) – is allergic to … [Read on]

The Hollywood Golden Sex Awards

12th January 2018 10

A recent TV drama described the long, bitter feud between Hollywood sirens Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. It showed  in gory detail their creative struggle with each other and the heartless Hollywood studios who owned them. According to the story, Bette won because she had raw talent whilst Crawford only ever had looks. Bette was a plain, skinny little thing … [Read on]

Tis the Season To Be Cheerful

24th December 2017 5

In Dumas’ great novel, The Count of Monte Cristo, Edmond Dantes was condemned to life imprisonment in the notorious Chateau d’If, a lonely tower off the French coast, plus an annual flogging. The human mind being what it is he couldn’t sit peacefully enjoying his sea view, instead his anxious thoughts continually anticipated the pain to come. I don’t know … [Read on]

Ruskin College. Growing snowflakes instead of a flint hard working class

13th December 2017 12

Browsing through the Ruskin College prospectus, advertising the further education college for 2017-18 was a bit of a shock. The college is famous, there is a romance about its original intention to help working class people, mainly men in trades unions better themselves. They needed no formal education, just an interest in improving their minds and prospects. Terms referring to … [Read on]

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