The Saturday Miscellany: Eimear McBride's bookshelf; immersive theatre; how to survive Domesday; inaugural Emmy nominees
How to: Survive Domesday
By Katherine Landergan
A nuclear bomb has exploded in Britain – now what? In the event of a nuclear attack, the BBC will play a pre-recorded set of instructions over its airwaves. Here's some of its apocalyptic advice:
"Radioactive fallout is many times more dangerous if you are directly exposed to it in the open. Roofs and walls offer substantial protection. Make sure gas and other fuel supplies are turned off."
"Refill all your containers for drinking water after any fires have been put out, because the mains supply may not be available for long."
"Ration your food supply, because it may have to last for 14 days or more. If you live in an area where a fallout warning has been given, stay in your fallout room... Stay tuned to this wavelength, but switch your radios off now to save your batteries until we come on the air again."
Rotating column: Dark matters
By Alice Jones
Immersive theatre has been hot stuff for the past few years but it can be a bit of hassle. Finding the venue, walking around, interacting. There is a simpler way. Turn off the lights. All of them, mind. Take the Samuel Beckett trilogy now showing at London's Royal Court. The only light for an hour is a spotlight on the actress. No footlights, no green EXIT signs.
In between plays, the theatre is plunged into pitch darkness. The real deal, where you can't see your hands, the sort of suffocating blackness that makes you wonder if you might just possibly be dead. It's rare to find that in the modern city and audiences are poleaxed by it. Nobody coughs, nobody fiddles with a phone, everyone has something to talk about when the lights come up. Ta-da: total theatrical immersion at the flick of a switch.
This article was written in broad daylight
Micro extract: Swiss rolling
"Catch the train today and it's like travelling in a mobile United Nations, with barely a Swiss voice to be heard. No wonder the announcements come in multiple languages."
From 'Slow Train to Switzerland' by Diccon Bewes (£18.99, Nicholas Brealey Publishing)
Four play: Inaugural Emmy nominees*
1. Don Lee Music Hall
2. Armchair detective
3. Mabel's Fables
4. Tuesday varieties
*first ceremony, today 1949
Q. A job has come up at my office which would suit my unemployed pal, but I really don't want to work with her.
A. Be selfish. Don't tell her. Then spend weeks combing the internet in search of better job opportunities you can send her way. This is known as 'karmic off-setting' and it's just as effective as the carbon variety.
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Andreas Lubitz: Who is Germanwings co-pilot who 'locked out captain and crashed flight 9525'?
- 2 JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
- 3 Germanwings crash: Descent may have been 'deliberate, suicidal choice' by pilot, claims experts
- 4 Germanwings plane crash live: Andreas Guenter Lubitz intentionally crashed flight 9525 into the Alps in act of mass murder and suicide – latest
- 5 Video shows what happens when lava is poured onto ice
Jeremy Clarkson to host BBC's Have I Got News For You despite Top Gear exit
Jeremy Clarkson says it 'isn't hard' to create another Top Gear
James May hints Top Gear days are over following Jeremy Clarkson's BBC suspension
Mark Gatiss on playing 'prince of darkness' Peter Mandelson in Channel 4's Coalition
James May hints he will not continue on Top Gear without Jeremy Clarkson
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Council tenant wins right not to be sent to Milton Keynes