Voices

It’s day nine of my 10-day Italian detox, and I have to admit to feeling seriously blissed out. I’m so relaxed that it actually makes me uncomfortable, it being such a rare thing in my existence. I spoke to my wife and kids on Skype, and watched them bickering away back in my normal existence. I told them to calm down and not talk to each other in that manner. Something in my new spiritual persona jarred with them and they all stopped arguing with each other and stared at the screen.

Twenty holiday myths exposed

Can a gin and tonic keep the mozzies away? Does a paper bag prevent jet lag? Kunal Dutta and Lyndsey Fineran get to the truth

A new model army tears its clothes off for 'amazing' Putin

Young women across Russia have been called on to show their support for Vladimir Putin in an unusual way: by ripping off their clothes. The unexpected campaign has been launched by a group calling itself the Putin Army, which posted a slick video online at the weekend featuring a trio of young women announcing a competition.

Eels, Somerset House, London

It is fair to say that Mark Everett - otherwise known as E, and the man behind Eels – has not always been known as the most cheerful of chaps. In his 2008 memoir Things the Grandchildren Should Know, he documents his rather tragic family history, events that have inspired a lot of the many downbeat moments found across Eels' nine albums.

Topshop withdraws advertisement of skinny model after complaint

High street giant Topshop succumbed to the pressure of an eating disorder charity yesterday, removing an image of 18-year-old model Codie Young from their website after campaigners alleged the image could encourage anorexia.

Album: The Lil' Band of Gold, The Promised Land (Room 609)

Dreadful name. Mind you, so is Susan and we know that it is Susan's content which makes her beautiful.

Korean prostitutes protest brothel crackdown

Hundreds of prostitutes and pimps rallied near a red-light district in Seoul, South Korea, yesterday to protest a police crackdown on brothels, with some attempting, unsuccessfully, to set themselves on fire.

David Flatman: More sweat and more girls. Summer rugby turns me on

From the Front Row: A February to November season will pick up the pace and skill levels, so let's have fun in the sun

Cyclo-therapy: 'You're at much greater risk if you drive or walk, than if you cycle'

As I type this in an airless office, people in short sleeves and sunglasses are frolicking among daffodils and buying their first ice-creams as they enjoy weather that is, I'll be told in tomorrow's papers (alongside photos of young women on Brighton beach), "Hotter Than Marbella!".

Booming overseas sales keep Asos on growth trail

Asos, the online fashion retailer, said its international sales overtook those in the UK for the first time in the fourth quarter, as its booming growth shows little sign of slowing.

Music & Me: The Shoes

Guillaume from Gallic duo The Shoes takes time out from the band’s January tour to answer a few questions for Music Magazine.

Being modern: TK Maxx

We have, us modern folk, a somewhat instinctual reaction to brands and labels. Should we hear, for example, talk of Littlewoods, BHS, Dorothy Perkins, Lidl or Peacocks, our noses begin to turn up almost reflexively. Which will still be many people's reaction to the words TK Maxx. Should, however, someone start to bandy the names Aquascutum, Helmut Lang, Mandarina Duck, See by Chloé or Nicole Farhi about at your dinner-party table... well, now we're talking.

Glasvegas, Concert Hall, Troon

They may have written their forthcoming album, EUPHORIC /// HEARTBREAK \\\ , at a beach house in California, but Glasvegas's new tracks will surely never sound more at home than on this debut mini-tour of remote Scottish locations in the dead of winter. This band make music to suit a wet Wednesday night on the Ayrshire coast, but it helps if you're surrounded by a few hundred Scots in full voice and off their faces.

Les Parents Terribles, Donmar Trafalgar, London </br> The Cradle Will Rock, Arcola, London </br> Beauty and the Beast, NT Cottesloe, London

Oedipus rocks: Cocteau&rsquo;s frenetic family tale of zig-zagging emotions and a mother&rsquo;s incestuous love fairly storms along in this terrific production.

Chanting crowds bid farewell to beloved Argentinian president

Thousands of Argentines filed past a flag-draped coffin to pay their respects to former president Nestor Kirchner last night, then lined the capital's rain-slicked streets for a glimpse of his hearse as it passed by.

Here comes the (scantily dressed) bride

You can't get much more Italian than a Dolce & Gabbana show. From the tanned fashion press in sunglasses and head-to-toe black, to the seductive lace creations that are one of the label's signatures, there is no mistaking where designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are from – and where their hearts belong.

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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there