The Saturday Miscellany: John Humphrys vs Jeremy Paxman; Kim Kardashian; Mexfest; George Catlin

  • @archiebland

Culture clash: Fearsome interviewers

Humphrys vs Paxman

By Archie Bland

There are two John Humphrys. There's the incisive interrogator of politicians who sets the news agenda on Today. There's also the harrumphing old geezer who loses focus on topics deemed less worthy of his attention, asking supposedly arch follow-up questions which sound like the voicemail your granddad leaves when he can't get the TV remote to work. Also presents TV's most boring quiz, Mastermind.

No such problem for Paxo, whose dripping disdain is consistent. Still authoritative despite Newsnight's dreadful recent spell, he thwarted his producers' attempts to get him to read out a weather forecast by the power of sarcasm alone. Presents TV's most exciting quiz, University Challenge, with a twinkle suggesting that he might be quite fun at parties. Winner: Paxman

The deleted emails of...Kim Kardashian (as read by Larry Ryan)

Sent: 2 July 2013
Subject: like, playdate!?!

Heyyyyyyyyyy B. Check out my new email address! Isn't it kool? Thought you'd like it!!

Thanks so much for the gifts from you and J for baby North. So beautiful. So expensive! K and I feel so much luv – we are truly blessed as a family!!

I know you said you were busy for the next couple of months but I would love you to bring Blue Ivy over for a playdate. It would be soooooo awesome!! My LO will be 2 months soon and she needs to start meeting the right people. She and BI will be BFFs, I know it. With their own show!! LOL. Neat idea!!

By the way, when you do come over, there will be cameras filming the new season of #KUWTK. Hope that's kool with you. Please come. Please!

xx KK

PS. I've kk'd our PAs on this email to koordinate diaries.

Sent from my kphone

Instant ethics

By Ellen E Jones

Dear Ellen

Q. Is it OK to take photos of sleeping commuters and send them to a friend?

A. Only under this very specific set of karmic circumstances: 1. The sleeping person is said friend's ex 2. Who cheated on them. 3. And has since had a terrible haircut.



By Liam O'Brien


Watch Mexican films and artworks this weekend at venues across the capital as part of London's Mexfest. There are themed lectures at the Royal Academy too.


Pennsylvanian artist George Catlin's fascinating portraits of American Indians from the 1830s at the Birmingham Museum. Until 13 October,, free


Pens by ST Dupont can cost thousands, but the colourful Jet 8 ballpoint is signature style at a snip. £65, from Harrods

Indy Index

By Kate McCarthy

In June, Ikea launched a flat-pack refugee shelter. The prototype cost more than £5,000 to make but they are aiming to bring the cost down to £640.

60  per cent of Ikea’s products, including its catalogue, are derived from forest materials. It is the third largest consumer of wood in the world.

In 2012 212 million copies of Ikea’s catalogue were printed, in 29 languages.

Despite deleting images of women from the Saudi version of its catalogue, Ikea boasts that 40 per cent of the company’s top 200 managers are women.

Sweden is ranked 4th in the world by the Global Gender Gap Report. Last year, the UK was ranked 18th.

In Sweden, parents are entitled to 480 days of parental leave per child. Women still take most of the days – in 2012, men took about 24 per cent of parental leave.

UK customers have bought more than 12.8m mattresses from Ikea since 1987. It is estimated that one in five children in Britain have been conceived in an Ikea bed.


-Ikea's right-on refugee shelter flat-pack, The Independent, The Guardian

-IKEA, 25 Facts, The Telegraph,

-IKEA, 25 Facts, The Telegraph

-The Secret of Ikea’s Success, The Economist

-The Global Gender Gap Report 2012, World Economic Forum

-Gender equality: The Swedish approach to fairness,

-Ikea, Ten Fun Facts, The Telegraph