News Gerardo Gamboa who handed in $300,000 found in the back of his taxi

A Las Vegas taxi driver proved it is the season of goodwill - after he handed in $300,000 left in the back of his cab.

Theatre: Humorous liaisons

As Jeanette Winterson once observed, it's dislocation that makes us laugh: something expected in an unexpected place - your favourite aunt in a poker parlour. Or the reverse: something unexpected in an expected place - a poker in your favourite aunt. If theatre is (wrongly) regarded as a place of "high cultural value", opera, despite its reputation for excess, is believed to be the domain of artistic piety to the point of transfiguration. So where does comic opera fit in?

The Law: Ten reasons why the law is an ass

Possessing computer files which contain unauthorised data about private indviduals

Dance Review: Dark, brutal passion - and not a poker in sight

Edward II Birmingham Hippodrome

One for his nob, two for his heels

William Hartston explores the curious rules and history of one of our oldest and most popular card games

Brits stun Vegas aces with pounds 2.5m poker haul

Las Vegas is used to the wild and weird, but this was really out of the ordinary: Brits and other Europeans whacking the locals at their very own game. They won more than $4m (pounds 2.5m) in the World Poker Championships, which ended last week at Binion's Horseshoe casino.

WHAT'S THE DEAL, PATRICK?

His first play was so good it was put on by the National. Now Patrick Marber is back with his follow-up to `Dealer's Choice'. But still he's not sure he wouldn't rather be idling away his time in front of the television

Playing in five dimensions

William Hartston devises the game to end all games - and to decide which ones suit you

The write stuff

The last time David Edgar hosted a conference on new writing, he called it 'All Passion Spent'.

Games people play Brian Sewell teaches Pandora Melly the joy of chess

Christopher Silvester, 37, writer and journalist.

Words: Buck

Buck

a cough, a sniff and a jump into the sick room

I feel strangely exalted ... febrile ... weird. Who needs drugs, eh, when you can just have flu? It began with a sudden intake of breath. Not much different from any other intake of breath except that this one burned. Another, more cautious breath. No mistake about it: the deep, satisfying crackle of lung infection. I really thought I'd managed to miss the winter plague this time, lagging myself like a boiler at the first advent of cold weather, proud to be seen in my little red hat, which looks exactly like the one the Penguin dons in The Wrong Trousers to make him look like a chicken.

Claus ... and effect

Never work with children or reindeer, the saying almost goes. The demeanour of five of the capital's Santas suggests why.

My biggest mistake : Businessman Santa Claus

Losses on the cards

Leading Article: Why Honest John will not come clean

So, the negotiation of a single currency in Europe is to be likened to a boys' game. After his septem dies horribiles, John Major's much-hyped television interview relied heavily on red cards, football pitches and poker, laddish metaphors from an embattled prime minister. A master of bathos, Mr Major yesterday called the decision on going forward with monetary union the most important peacetime decision; others might claim that honour for accession to the North Atlantic Treaty in 1949, but either way it seems that destiny is being approached in the spirit of a Las Vegas craps game. Our Number 10 card sharp says he is keeping his hand face down, to be revealed with a flourish in that city of sin, Amsterdam, in June next year. Ah, but won't there have been a general election by then? Well, yes: the possibility is that we shall never know what the deuce his position is.

Edinburgh Festival: Four to see

Dealer's Choice (right)
Career Services

Day In a Page

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