first encounters: When Jean-Paul Sartre met Simone de Beauvoir

Illustration by Edward Sorel Text by Nancy Caldwell Sorel Next week: Fred Astaire and Count Basie

Is this ashtray the most stolen item in London?

It is nothing special, just a piece of moulded aluminium. But this ashtray is one of the most sought-after and theft-prone items in London. Quaglino's, the West End restaurant owned by Sir Terence Conran, loses 1,000 of these ashtrays a month.

Craftafarians: making a little go a long way

Arts and crafts are the thing. Katie Sampson on a home-made phenomenon

Hanson launches its dustbin

THE INVESTMENT COLUMN

where shall we meet? The Mission, SW2

Recently opened on this windy avenue of stripped pine shops is the Mission, a wine bar and restaurant with some actually likeable abstract canvases on the walls. This former carpet warehouse has tables outside and a nice light opening shopfront, and one major drawback: bar tables are set on a platform so narrow that if you add a fifth chair to the end of a table the person sitting there will risk tipping off. House plonk is pounds 8.50, jugs of cocktails pounds 10, sandwiches and burgers pounds 1.90-pounds 4.50. Smokers beware: very pretty porphyry ashtrays only hold about four butts and the staff aren't over-assiduous about emptying them. Griping apart, a good addition to the area, as long as there are only four in your party.

True gripes : Basil, please brush off

Urban foxes are a pain. Who needs them?

Making it big

centrepiece

DIARY: Damn, damn, damn.

Damn, damn, damn. There I was, all set with Thermos and sandwich box to hang around the public gallery of the High Court on Monday, quivering with delight as the Princess of Wales was probed about the invasion of her privacy by Peeping Toms. Now the bloody woman has gone and settled out of court. It's not fair. We loyal fans, in whose drab lives the Princess's leotardal calisthenics at west London's LA Fitness Club were a definite high point, cannot be fobbed off with legal niceties. We need mor e.

Mother of murdered boy is arrested

The mother of six-year-old Rikki Neave was arrested yesterday by detectives investigating his murder.

The kids are all right. Oh no they're not

Children get a bad deal in the theatre at the best of times and Christm as is the worst of times, writes Tim Supple, artistic director of the Young Vic ; 'tis a season to be vacuously jolly with cannibalised plots, lazy direction a nd celebrity casts \

Cuttings: Tracing Mr Cave

JACK BRIGGS, of Whittlesford, Cambs, who has spent most of his working life as an entomologist at the East Malling Research Station, writes with more information about the George Cave who gave his name to an apple (the Independent, 27 August).

Food & Drink: Who needs greasy fingerprints?: Psychological profiling is not just a game for puzzled policemen. Anyone can play

1) Does the subject always blame others for his or her own mistakes?

'Penis' missing

Police have been called in to find an ashtray shaped like a penis, which was once used as a murder weapon. Medical students were blamed when the ashtray, a skeleton and two foetuses in a jar disappeared in August from the pathology museum at Charing Cross hospital.

Kidnap baby's mother tells of hoax agony: Karen Humphries, now reunited with her daughter Abbie, wonders how malicious callers could be so cruel. Simon Midgley reports

HOAXERS who phoned the police claiming that they had or knew who had abducted four- hour-old baby Abbie Humphries from a Nottingham hospital maternity ward, caused her mother Karen untold agony, she says today.

Letter: The universality of Christian socialism

Sir: As someone who has attempted to rewrite Christian socialism as a more politically correct 'ethical socialism', Professor AH Halsey ('Where is the spirit of our age?', 8 July) seems understandably embarrassed that people should increasingly doubt the efficacy of a self-evident 'ethics' as a political imperative, and come to feel that the values by which he sets so much store are not given for all time - as the Enlightenment had it - but the legacy of Christian faith.
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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?