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Sian Smith: 'She's not in trouble. We just want her back'

The mission: Colds must be fed. Where better to test this out than an `all-you-can-eatery'? Matthew Sweet suffers for science

wo phrases underpin this week's mission: "Feed a cold" and "All you can Eat". And this is the story of their horrible collision. Some people have tested the limits of the human frame by scaling mountains or blasting themselves up into space - either of which I would have been prepared to do to furnish material for this column. Instead, I was forced to take up a less noble challenge - testing how much food one human being could consume in a day. A fairly greedy human being with a stinking cold. Anyone with a weak stomach should probably now flip forward to the Crossword.

Visual Arts: It's `The Independent', but not as we know it

In his new exhibition, Richard Wentworth invites us to view everyday objects in a new way. And that includes this newspaper.

This week's top ten sports books

1 Rothmans Book of Football Records, Jack Rollin (Headline, hardback, pounds 25.00).

Restaurants: Christmas Kitsch

Walthamstow Stadium

Clubs: The best of the rest: Breeze

PUSHCA @ hanover grand

Altogether now... breathe

A COUPLE of years ago, I was looking for a poem of Auden's which I couldn't lay my hands on, so I went to Charing Cross Road to look for it. Foyle's was the first shop I went into, and was genuinely shocked to find the shelves bare of his books. I became angry: this great English poet unrepresented in what was once an international byword for bookshops. "Do you realise," I said, tersely, to the assistant, "that there is not a single copy of any book by W H Auden in stock?" "Yes," he replied, "and it's your fault." It was shortly after the release of Four Weddings and a Funeral. I knew that there had been a bit of a rush on "Funeral Blues", so memorably spoken by John Hannah in the film, but had no idea that Auden had literally reached the best-seller lists. It was a striking reminder of how poetry, the Cinderella of the written word, with sales in single figures, can, spoken aloud, be the most popular of all literary genres.

Racing: Gallagher rides through storm

DEAN GALLAGHER said yesterday that "nothing new" emerged in Tuesday's questioning by police investigating doping and race-fixing allegations. He said he was "very disappointed" at being rebailed, so that the inquiry which has racing in thrall for eight months will drag on again until at least next January. However, he intends to carry on riding as normal, resuming at Ludlow today.

Racing: Gallagher forced to wait again

POLICE QUESTIONED Dean Gallagher, the National Hunt jockey, for nearly eight hours at a central London police station yesterday as part of the on-going investigation by the Metropolitan Police into race-fixing and doping. Last night Gallagher, and six other men who had also been questioned at length, were bailed until November.

Racing: Osborne in clear over race-fixing

JAMIE OSBORNE became the second National Hunt jockey to be released from police investigations into race-fixing and doping allegations yesterday. The discharge from scrutiny by Scotland Yard's Organised Crime Group ended nine months of torment for one of winter racing's most charismatic riders.

A humanist on the information superhighway

The Metaphysical Touch by Sylvia Brownrigg Gollancz pounds 16.99

The knack How to walk the beat

"Good boots are a necessity - you're on your feet for the best part of your shift. Check the weather forecasts and make sure you've got appropriate clothes for the time of day. The early hours can get really cold and it's no good having your thermals at home when you're freezing your parts off on the street.

Serial rapist prowls railways

A RAPIST has been preying on women at railway stations as they return from work, police revealed yesterday.

Cafe Society: the good, the bad - and all points between

Paddington: Raffles Cafe-Diner corner of Spring St and Praed St, open 7am-11pm Does excellent espresso, decent sandwiches, cooked breakfasts, mezze, and has pavement tables.

Court told of girl's taxi rape

A SCHOOLGIRL who ran away from home to seek out her pop idol, Brian Harvey, was repeatedly raped by a taxi driver she trusted, an Old Bailey court heard today.

Review: A welcome return

The Amazing Rhythm Aces The Borderline, London
Career Services

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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker