Daily catch-up: frogs, radiators and medical ailments in songs

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1. Some late entries for my Top 10 Odd Pub Names. Paul Wilson gives me The Sun and 13 Cantons in Soho (above), which has something to do with the Old Swiss Confederacy of 13 cantons, which existed 1513-1798. And is nothing to do with China. What is even better is that canton is Old French for corner. Lovely.

2. I have also been asked by Citizen Sane to consider the Frog and Radiator in Greenwich. The internet tells me it used to be called the Ship and Billet but it was renamed in the 1980s because “a new landlady wanted a distinctive silly name”.

And by Issy Flamel ‏to add One Flew Over the Throstle’s Nest, on Scotty road in Liverpool, although that seems to be called just The Throstle’s Nest hotel now.

And by Andrew Denny to include The Kicking Dickey, Great Dunmow, Essex.

Consider it done.

3. Talking of Top 10s, my excellent former colleague Matt Chorley suggested a new list yesterday:

“I’m as serious as cancer. When I say rhythm is a dancer.” There must be a Top 10 Medical Ailments in Songs.

The line was nominated for Worst Rhyming Couplets a while back, but inexplicably failed to make the final 10, so this is its second chance. So far we have had “Hello Mrs Jones, how’s old Bert’s lumbago?” Small Faces (nominated by Dan Jackson) and “You get enough germs to catch pneumonia/ And when you do he’ll never phone ya...” written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, sung by Dianne Warwick (David Freedman). More to me on Twitter, please.

4. This is good, spotted by Omer Lev: It turns out that crowds aren’t wise after all.

5. I am making slow progress in compiling my best tweets of the year. So far I have got from January to June. But now I have come across the Anecdote of the Year, told by Daniel Finkelstein in The Times on 28 June (pay wall).




This was originally tweeted by Iain Macintosh and every time I have re-posted it, it has occasioned a storm of scepticism. Finkelstein, however, insists it is genuine, although he won’t say who the MP is.

6. And finally, thanks to Simon Munnery for this (via David):

“An infinite number of monkeys was given an infinite number of typewriters. It’s called the internet.”