Spotlight: The New York comedy circuit

New York has had a cold winter. So cold that, according to the comedian Ben Bailey, everyone in the city looked as if they were homeless, wearing at least three coats and having permanently runny noses. Though the advent of spring on the weekend I arrived certainly cheered most of the population, comedians, of course, remained professionally cynical. “What is all this about the wind-chill factor?” growled Lewis Black. “Why do I need to know what temperature it could have been if it hadn't been for the breeze?”

Focus: Found out, and found guilty. It's curtains for Martha Stewart

Furnishings and food, yes, but even she cannot sell lying as a designer choice, says David Usborne. And she can't do her show from a cell

The firing brigade

How should a media boss react when an employee is accused of a crime? Whatever he does, he risks trouble, says Tim Luckhurst

OUR DUMB CENTURY: REPORTS FROM THE FRONTIERS OF HISTORY - Oprah secedes from US

Forms independent nation of cheesecake-eating housewives

A good idea from ... Oprah Winfrey

FOR THOUSANDS of years, our ancestors didn't talk about their emotions. They killed bison and elk, returned to their caves and kept it to themselves if they had been afraid of woolly creatures, had felt small and had longed for the lost comfort of the womb. Then, gradually, mental health came to be equated with the ability to reveal vulnerable feelings to others. Over the past two centuries, staying silent about our fears and longings has gone from being viewed as brave and stoic to being viewed as dangerous: a kind of "bottling up", "repression" or, even worse, "denial".

Tried and Tested: Taming the screw

Uncertain which way to turn in a DIY crisis? Our panel measures the mettle of cordless screwdrivers

Don't beef about Oprah

AN ECONOMIC expert testified in court yesterday that factors such as drought, high corn prices and weak exports had far more impact on a cattle market slump than anything said on Oprah Winfrey's talk show.

Jokers have last laugh on Dole

The US presidential candidates are a rich source of humour for TV show hosts, writes John Carlin

Ricki Lake: bigger than Oprah? The 26-year-old talk-show prodigy talks to Hester Lacey

KELLY'S dad had an affair with Kelly's mom's best friend when Kelly was three. Kelly, now 23, who hasn't seen her father for seven years, is describing, between sobs, how he took her along on his clandestine dates. Suddenly her dad walks out on stage to sit beside her. The Ricki Lake Show is broadcast at five o'clock every Wednesday. This episode explores the experiences of "Children of Unfaithful Parents"; members of the audience are then invited to pitch in with their views, as outrageously as possible.

Grand for Oprah

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Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
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The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
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Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas