Life and Style

At the risk of straying into territory staked out by my more lurid male counterparts, I once saw a strip bar in Nashville with a neon sign outside advertising '99 Beautiful Girls! And One Ugly One'. They can get away with that kind of playful hucksterism down in the American South. Here, outraged punters would be demanding refunds and invoking the Trade Descriptions Act.

Parker battles for the ball with Arjen Robben

From McDonald's kid to England, but Parker still has peaks to scale

Never seen as a member of the 'Golden Generation', the midfielder has fought his way up to lead the team

New row erupts over unpaid work placements

The Government was today accused of "imposing" unpaid work placements on the unemployed ahead of a meeting over its controversial work experience scheme.

Simms Taback: Award-winning children's author

Simms Taback was an award-winning children's author and illustrator.

To promote its revolutionary new product, Ready Baked Jackets, McCain has introduced 3D fibreglass models of baked tatties at selected bus stops in London, York, Manchester, Nottingham and Glasgow

Why an innovation in advertising is causing a stink

It was probably only a matter of time before "Smell-vertising" became a reality and it looks like fast-food spud specialists McCain is the first major company to get in on the act.

Lisa Markwell: Turns out it's the shape of your food that matters

How do you get hooked on nuggets? There was a story in yesterday's newspapers about a 17-year-old girl whose relentless diet of chicken nuggets has resulted in major health problems. This result, of course, should not be "news" to anyone. Cheap meat cloaked in a greasy case as the basis for nutrition. It's blindingly obvious that it's a disaster.

Ford Focus Zetec S

Ford Focus Zetec S

'It's got more than enough poke to be a quick parental taxi'

The campaign embarrassed McDonald's on the day when Nick Clegg visited a training centre

Not lovin' it: McDonald's eats humble pie after Twitter backlash

McDonald's has admitted a venture into social media backfired when a Twitter campaign designed to spread good news about the fast-food giant was hijacked by unhappy eaters.

James Moore: A McJob? That's just what our Neets need

Outlook: Roll up, Neets (that's Not in Education, Employment or Training). Time to get out of bed, get on your bike and get in line because there's a McJob out there for you. In fact, there are more than 700 of them going to first-time workers and more than 1,250 to young people generally. Actually, the fast-food chain feels the same way about that pejorative term "McJob" as it probably feels about an army of militant vegans. The phrase is shorthand for low-wage, low-status, dead-end service jobs with no training and no prospects.

McDonald's relishes record UK year

Fast food giant McDonald's hailed a record year in the UK today after new menus and longer opening hours boosted sales.

McDonald's to create 2,500 new jobs

Fast food giant McDonald's will create at least 2,500 new UK jobs this year, it announced today.

Terence Blacker: Don't sneer if a Big Mac encourages reading

At moments when they are about to deliver yet another item of miserable news, Government ministers tend to intone the now-familiar mantra that we are all facing "tough decisions". It has become a verbal tic, rather like the use of "Inshalla" in Arabic countries.

Cameron aide broke rules by joining lobbying firm

One of David Cameron's senior Downing Street advisers has broken rules meant to stop former government officials from trading on their inside knowledge of Whitehall and access to ministers, The Independent has learnt.

League round-up: Boro and West Ham fluff their lines

Both Middlesbrough and West Ham United spurned the chance to go level on points with Championship leaders Southampton, although Boro have the satisfaction of starting 2012 in the automatic promotion places after a 1-1 home draw with Peterborough United lifted them above the east Londoners.

Anuj Bidve (left) and Subhash Bidve: The victim's father has claimed nobody from the UK Government or consulate has informed him when his son's body will be returned to India

Family heard of Salford murder on Facebook

A police chief has apologised to the family of an Indian student shot dead in Salford on Boxing Day who learnt of their son's murder on Facebook.

Race probe after student is shot dead in street

Detectives are investigating whether the murder of an Indian student, who was gunned down in the street as he visited a city with friends, was racially motivated.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee