Simon Usborne

Simon Usborne is a features writer at The Independent and i.

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The Independent around the web

Why a career is no longer for life

As the retirement age advances, workers are more likely to switch profession

Michael Schumacher speeds down a course in the Madonna di Campiglio ski resort, in the Italian Alps in January 2006

Michael Schumacher injury: The risks of skiing must be viewed rationally, and reduced - but they cannot be avoided

Often those who do get injured use all available safety precautions

Emergency services said nearly 90 people had been injured in a packed London theatre when part of the ceiling collapsed during a performance, bringing the city's West End theatre district to a standstill

Apollo Theatre collapse: We thought cracks and bangs were part of the show – but the cast stopped and looked upwards in horror

Independent feature writer Simon Usborne didn't appreciate at first how lucky he was to be seated so near the back of the theatre

Bookmaker: Jean Horton is working on her third memoir

This is my life: how to write your autobiography

In the age of easy publishing, the nearly departed are increasingly turning to professionals to document their lives. So what's it like being brought to book?

A very altruistic Christmas: Ingenious ideas that provide a welcome antidote to festive splurging

Forget the last-minute dash to splash the cash on presents - there is an alternative approach to giving, and it needn't cost you a penny

From refugee to war reporter: Yalda Hakim fled Afghanistan as a baby and now reports from the world’s conflict zones

Yalda Hakim’s face is familiar to millions of BBC viewers abroad and her reporting is also fast earning her a reputation in Britain

One man and his blog: Herdyshepherd’s flock

Flock star: A shepherd in the Lake District now has almost 20,000 Twitter followers

Simon Usborne asks @HerdyShepherd1 how he came to have such a large 'farmy army'

Amazon's ‘octocopter' drones could be making deliveries by 2015

Faceless drones won't solve Amazon's PR problem

Ten miles in 30 minutes? A teenager on a scooter could do that in less time

Gong but not forgotten: Bernardine Bishop

In the prime of death: The artists who didn't make it to the podium in this life

Bernadine Bishop could be the first writer to win the Costa Book of the Year posthumously

Found in translation: Daniel Hahn (left) stares down a wordy foe in a duel

Translation slam: A war of words

Tonight, two literary translators went head to head in a bloodless but book-filled battle. Simon Usborne explores the world of duels fought with dictionaries

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Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform