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.

Does size really matter? It does when it comes to your sandwich: Two men sue 'Subway' over size of their 'Footlong'

Company initially issued a statement saying that the sandwich lengths can vary a bit when franchises do not bake to the exact standard

Why flexitarians like me fit neatly into an an age when everyone is so afraid to commit

Meat-eaters are carnivores; the rest are veggies; and there's nothing in between. But might a flexible approach to other rigid concepts help us make sense of modern life?

The great French stench: 'Sulphur with sooty notes, like boiled egg, singed with a blow torch'

As a cloud of foul-smelling gas wafts over from France, Tom Peck visits Redhill, south London to sniff out the local reaction to its latest unwelcome visitor

Head v heart: Southampton chairman Nicola Cortese and Swansea’s Angel Rangel (pictured) both acted on their core beliefs, with very different results

The Last Word: A rare Angel among the callous Saints

How Rangel's charitable gesture contrasts with the graceless world of men like Nicola Cortese

Polly the cat travelled 1,700 miles trapped in a train's undercarriage.

InterKitty train: trapped cat travels 1,700 miles

A two-year-old tabby cat was found in "surprisingly good condition" after travelling 1,700 miles trapped in a train's undercarriage.

Tom Hodgkinson: The boys seem happiest surrounded by screens

What's wrong with children? However much you attempt to instill an anti-consumerist philosophy into them, they still hurl themselves unthinkingly at the latest fads, costing you an arm and a leg in the process.

TV review: Borgen, The Last Worker

Tom Leece is Film and TV editor at Fourth & Main

Lisa Markwell: Why has cooking become a spectator sport?

So, Delia Smith has left Waitrose to spend more time with her football team/husband/mixing bowl. Her on-screen husband, Heston Blumenthal, meanwhile, will continue to hawk the posh groceries, while those of us who love Delia hope she might return to what we always liked best – foolproof recipes. By which I mean her How to Cook heyday; let's draw a veil quietly over the cheat's book, which used frozen mash (shudder).

Pret a Manger

Pret workers want more for their smile: enough pay and hours to live on

The sandwich and coffee chain’s reputation is being challenged

'I accidentally touched another commuter’s hand on the handrails on the tube today' - by Dragodot

British People Problems: BuzzFeed meme attracts more than 230,000 views in 24 hours

An online forum for a uniquely British form of moaning has gone viral in the US. Liam O'Brien celebrates

Grace Dent on TV: Jamie and Jimmy's Food Fight Club, Channel 4

Giant jam sandwiches and silly sausage fights are ruining our beloved celebrity chefs

Questionable Time: Will Self and Peter Hitchens keep each other honest

In the last QT before Christmas, we spare a thought for Justine Greening, sandwiched between two of the most antagonistic gum-flappers this country has ever produced

Six things I’ve learnt watching Fresh Meat

When Fresh Meat first aired in 2011, I had just gone through the ordeal most commonly known as Fresher’s week. Interested to know how Peep Show creators Jesse Armstrong and Sam Bain would portray university life, I at first found Fresh Meat surprisingly realistic... except that university students do work some of the time, but that wouldn’t make for very entertaining television.

Christmas turkey? Why not go for a goose

The traditional Christmas bird may not be cheap, says Anthea Gerrie, but with its uniquely delicious fat and crispy crackling, it’s a festive feast that keeps on giving

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried