I keep having to look up the results of the Labour leadership election in order to remind colleagues...
28 November 2007 12:00 AM
Now is the time for every good Oxbridge journalist to run a piece on his own personal memories of the Oxford Union, to look deep within his soul and say to himself: "Do I have actually have any memories of the Oxford Union? Did I actually go to Oxford? Or was it Cambridge? Given my whole life all over again, should I have omitted university altogether? Might I not have done better to go straight to the big city and started a night club called Stringfellow's, and made a fortune, and thus been invited to be a constant guest speaker at university unions and thus learnt what it was like inside the Oxford Union without the pain of spending three years there as well?"
27 November 2007 12:00 AM
Yesterday, children, we went out for a nature ramble with Uncle Geoffrey and his nephew Robert and niece Susan, and a fat lot of good it was too, as they were being most unco-operative and didn't talk about nature at all!
26 November 2007 12:00 AM
23 November 2007 12:00 AM
Does nobody feel sorry for Steve McClaren, deposed England football manager?
22 November 2007 12:00 AM
This Inland Revenue business and those scandalously missing details – how will it affect us all personally? At very short notice, I have called in the highly respected tax expert Naughton Rock (no relation) to help tackle some of your individual cases.
21 November 2007 12:00 AM
Yesterday, halfway through writing a piece saying how clever Mrs Gaskell had been to invent such a plausible place name as Cranford, I discovered that there are in fact several real places in Britain called Cranford. No matter. I thought she had invented it. Maybe she thought she had too. It's a clever name either way. And that whole area of real names and false names is so fluid, anyway, that you can never be quite sure where the borders lie.
20 November 2007 12:00 AM
Knutsford is the small plump Cheshire town where Mrs Gaskell lived, and on which she based her fictional town of Cranford. I went to Knutsford once, to take part in their Festival, and was interested to see that a number of strong elderly women still seemed to be in charge, to none of whom I dared admit that I had never read a word of Knutsford's famous daughter.
19 November 2007 12:00 AM
At the weekend I was browsing through a book published by the BBC way back in 1981 called The Art of Radio Times, a big format hardback which gave you a generous helping of some of the artists who had made the Radio Times such a treasure house of good drawing over the years. Nowadays, of course, there are no drawings at all in the magazine and younger readers must wonder what the hell I am on about, even referring to art and the Radio Times in the same breath. The fact that for many years every cover of the Radio Times was hand-drawn must seem ludicrous to them.
16 November 2007 12:00 AM
Where are they now? That's the question we often ask in these days of easy fame.
15 November 2007 12:00 AM
Just when you thought it was safe to relax, I am afraid it is time to put on your thinking cap again. Yes, it's time for your very own news quiz, when I get the chance to test you on your knowledge of everyday news and current affairs.
14 November 2007 12:00 AM
An anonymous correspondent has sent me an account of the latest parish council meeting of the quaint Wiltshire village of Courtney Pine, where he or she lives. It is a quaint village on two counts, partly because it still has a flourishing shop and partly because it is the only village in Britain with a member of the Taliban serving as a parish councillor. This leads to spirited debates on village policy, as we can sense from the meeting of 18 October, with Mr Beeton in the chair.
13 November 2007 12:00 AM
Good news, boys.
12 November 2007 12:00 AM
Today I am bringing you more of my exclusive interview with Sir Ralph Willoughby-Fiennes, head of the National Treasures Council, whose job it is to confirm the National Treasure status of such figures as the Queen Mother and John Betjeman, and to arrange their replacement when the time comes ...
08 November 2007 12:00 AM
It seems a bit odd to us here in Britain that when the American Writers' Guild goes on strike, as it just has, the TV talk show hosts have nothing left to say. Those verbose anchormen like David Letterman and Jay Leno do not, after all, make it up as they go along; all those monologues, jokes, sketches and introductions to guests, they're all made up for them by someone else! So without writers, talk shows go off the air...
07 November 2007 12:00 AM
I think it's time for another edition of Opposite Options, our reader advice service in which you ask the questions and we give the answer that's right for you.
President Putin is a dangerous psychopath - reason is not going to work with him
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign
Dramatic rise in road deaths as numbers of traffic police fall
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
LGBT employees who feel unable to come out at work more likely to leave their jobs - and cost business millions
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