Sport Wiggins wins Sports Personality award after his Tour de France and Olympic triumphs

Psychological study reveals how we feel about sportspeople

Partying isn't everything - a night in would be something to celebrate

Ladies und gentlemen, and those who can't make up their minds, I have in my hand a piece of paper, a press release to be precise, inviting me to pop along to the Lancaster Road, London and - let me check this again - "celebrate my sexuality". Yes, that's what it says, "celebrate my sexuality" with - who's that sniggering at the back? - "a magician, bingo and a raffle". Now, I can see how the magician might be useful, but bingo and a raffle? Unless, of course, there's some almost cosmic connection that I'm simply missing, between the uncontrollable urge to stand up in public and belt out a brassy rendition of 'I Am What I Am' (a litre of Malibu and pineapple and I think we've all been there) and games of chance and destiny.

Six of the best swimsuits

1Black and white belted bikini, pounds 29.99. The thick heavy-duty Lycra is reminiscent of wet-suit material, making it the perfect choice for Ursula Andress types. If you don't feel up to baring your bod in a bikini, or strapping a knife to your thigh, this smart design is also available as a swim suit. Knickerbox: call 0171-284 1858 for nearest branch.

OBITUARY:Bernard Phillips

Bernard Phillips was for more than a generation a doyen of the insolvency profession.

Circus Saltimbanco / Cirque du Soleil Royal Albert Hall

'It isn't a freak show, though sometimes it verges on it'

The Welsh borders have been invaded by a rush of young people in Lycra

You go mountain-biking with Jerry Gissop at your peril. He may be 48, and have a studious look about him; but not only does he ride regularly around Welsh border country, he also, when the spirit takes him, goes on ferocious bashes overseas. Thus he once rode - or, to be accurate, carried - his bike over the flanks of Mount El'brus, in the Caucasus, reaching 13,000ft. He has also powered home through the Pyrenees, along the northern coast of California and up through the Outer Hebrides.

six of the best party dresses

1 Next, pounds 59.99 Black shiny corset dress in 100 per cent polyester. Also available in full length. A strong fashion look that harps back to past collections from Gucci and Prada. This is a lovely dress, although the shape is not suitable for all body shapes: the waist and hips can look a bit thick. From branches of Next and Christmas mail order. Enquiries on 01162 849424

Gear freaks / The cyclist

Also known as: ruff stuffer (mountain bike cyclist), roadie (competitive cyclist), tourer (recreational cyclist), commuter (cyclist who cycles to work), cycle courier (cyclist who cycles for work).

buy me: warehouse zebra dress

This autumn, the op-art clothing made famous by Courreges in the Sixties has been resurrected. The look swept through the designer collections, from Anna Sui to Versace, and fashion stories from the glossy magazines have dedicated pages to the virtues of the monochrome palette.

TRIED & TESTED: BODY OF EVIDENCE

Where once there were white T-shirts, now there are bodies - but the no-nonsense one-piece is not without flaws

Buy me: TOGA DRESS

Long ago in ancient Rome when men and women dressed the same, things were simpler, but a lot less fun. The toga may have been a design classic, but it was a dodgy item to wear. What with the constant threat of exposure because of a bad fit around the shoulders, it's no wonder fashion evolved.

Television: Please sit. I'd like to appeal on behalf of The Choir

This week I'd like to appeal on behalf of The Choir. Now, I don't doubt that there will be some among the congregation who will bridle at this suggestion. Is it really a deserving cause, they will ask. Some among you, no doubt, will point to the audience figures, which, while not exactly luxurious could scarcely be depicted as requiring charitable relief. Is it our responsibility, they will say, if this series has got ideas above its station? Why did it not have the common sense to stay on BBC2, where 6 million viewers would have given it more than respectable life, indeed pre-eminence in that select community? To those questions I have no answer.

OPERA / Give up the boos: Die Walkure - Royal Opera House

With the chorus of disapproval still echoing from last Thursday's Das Rheingold, conductor Bernard Haitink barely paused for applause before pitching us precipitately into the teeth of the stormy prelude to Die Walkure. On stage, the lone figure of Sieglinde darted to and fro, her body convulsing violently as if the electric current of the music were passing through it, as if she and not her twin Siegmund were in flight from Hunding's dogs. In a starting coup de theatre, she reached into the fire, and the flames offered up Siegmund into her arms. For a moment they were one.

In Thing: Morma Kamali Omo Gym

Very LA, very exercise bimbo, are Norma Kamali's new gym kit range. Made from the latest hi-tech fabrics - read mountaineering gortex - Kamali's togs are this season's hottest sellers at Harvey Nicks. We're not sure why. Flesh-gripping industrial lycra with nifty spangled motifs aren't the most comfortable things to wear when the heat is on and the sweat is pouring. But models with perfect figures must have looked great in these on the catwalk. For club dweebs, really, not the dedicated exercise freak.

Footsteps in the sand: Lycra-clad enthusiasts in sunglasses are playing the Copacabana's favourite game in rain-sodden Britain. Richard Simpson wonders why

The Jamaican bobsleigh team is a shining example of how to cheat on nature. The island has not seen snow in living memory, and yet their four-man team slipped down Lillehammer's slopes like true virtuosos at this year's Winter Olympics. So there's no reason why Britain should not be a serious contender for the beach volleyball title.

REVIEW / Is that a gun, or are you just pleased to see me?

BY ONE of those odd coincidences - call it Zeitgeist, call it spooky, call Arthur Koestler - the title sequence for Men of the Month (BBC 2), a drama about images of masculinity, was strikingly similar to that for Men Only (C4, Monday), a new series in which women directors look at men. The latter is rather ingenious - a slow track past a series of tasteful monochrome portraits of men in which you can glimpse dim reflections of their female observers. Well, not that ingenious, I suppose, but stylishly done and promising. (A correspondent recently ticked me off for writing about a title sequence but I am unrepentant - they are the way a series chooses to dress itself before going out, and when you know how much the clothes cost you don't lightly dismiss them as a mere incidental.)
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Prices correct as of 17 September 2014
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

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'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

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Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

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His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam