Monthly Archives: August 2006

The Future Of Darfur And The Future Of The Left

Because of a couple of gremlins over at the Euston Manifesto site we’ve accidentally been turning people away from applying for tickets to our meeting next Tuesday evening in London. It’s free and there will be three speakers on the subject: “Darfur: An Urgent Case for Humanitarian Intervention”. Follow the link to email us for […]

The Channel Is Narrow But Deep

On my way to have my teeth checked yesterday morning I was listening to BBC Radio 4. Woman’s Hour was recounting the forgotten history of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. The best bit was when one of the experts recited the original French words to the tune of the nursery rhyme and reminded us of how […]

Leather-Clad Spines In Tight Bindings

Via too many links to remember: hardcore library porn [safe for work]. Like this:Like Loading…

How Free Markets For Talent Work, An Explanation For Talentless Market Freeloaders

Over the past couple of weeks there’s been a crop of stories in the media in which employers bleat about the “shortage” of trained scientists and the “shortage” of literate and numerate employees. As with most of these perennial news items—I’m sure most outlets now have ready-made Word templates so their journalists can bang them […]

Every Cloud

I was sitting in a waiting room yesterday. As always, I couldn’t resist reading one of the women’s reality rags—almost as appealing as discarded copies of the Daily Mail on a Tube train. Real magazine rewarded me for my defying public mockery with this lovely headline, neatly balancing the ghoulishness, shrill optimism, and bathos that […]


Note to government advertisers: this is how to make disposing of litter cool. (Of course, Defra or whoever’s responsible could be showing ads like this already, but I wouldn’t have seen them because I don’t have a TV.) Like this:Like Loading…

Stop The War(monger Bush And His Poodle Blair)

As you know I’ve been busy, so I’ve only just noticed via Jo Salmon that someone has found an honest STWC/CND flyer. Like this:Like Loading…

Who Says Bioinformaticians Don’t Have A Sense Of Humour?

I haven’t had time for a proper post for the past few days and I still don’t, but Leasey recommends that you explore the platypus genome by hovering your mouse pointer over the little image of a platypus on this page and reading the pop-up that appears. Genomics: an unrecognized mine of comedy gold. Like […]

Arsenal Relieved To Save Point At Home To Villa

I enjoyed typing that. Martin’s magic makes Thierry look ordin-erry. Like this:Like Loading…

Columnists Continue To Pollute

I guarantee that the myth of the decline in 4×4 sales will be all over the media within a month. Tim Almond’s simple debunking of it won’t. [When you view Tim’s article, is it accompanied by Google advertisements for cardiology journals? It is when I do, but I read it while I was running Microsoft […]

Turning World

I’m smart enough to appreciate just how much smarter than me my friends are. As I always say, talent recognizes genius. Talent should also recognize its own limits. I’ve reached that stage in my life when I’ve had to accept that I won’t be able to do the things I dreamt of doing when I […]

My Kind Of Loser

Al Gore seemed to have been engineered by a mad scientist to become President of the United States of America: born in Washington DC to a former senator, elite education, lots of practice being Vice-President to one of the more distracted actual Presidents, George W. Bush for his opponent, tall, good hair. How could it […]


There are excellent posts by Harry, DavidT, and Marcus on the front page of Harry’s Place. Following all the stand-ins and argy-bargy over there it’s like the Beatles coming back on after having The Electric Light Orchestra play support. [Note that, like wardytron, I rather like ELO.] Like this:Like Loading…

Randy The Vampire Slayer

It has long been a given in my life that Aston Villa, the football team I “support”, is mediocre—not completely rubbish, not great, just financially secure and chronically underachieving. The man widely believed to be responsible for this long-running dullness, the club’s chairman “Deadly” Doug Ellis, has now agreed he will “step down” and allow […]

Sex And Sensitivity

The Wedding Photography Blog was picked up, via Design | asides, to feature in Designers Who Blog, but I didn’t mention it here when it happened because my friend Fudge said the photo of me they used makes me look as if I’m just about to sneeze. Now I’ve got over this, you can see it too. […]

Lighten Up!

Over at Drink-Soaked Trots, frustrated holidaymaker Eric objects to the pre-emptive arrest of the alleged terrorists: “This all seems a counter-productive effort really. I mean actually arresting them before they actually carry out the attack may alienate these oppressed young men and further radicalise them. Not to mention that their civil rights have probably been […]

Rapid Build-Up

In response to today’s security alert cancelling all short-haul flights into Heathrow, the Danes have deployed an aircraft carrier off the coast of Jutland. Like this:Like Loading…

Running Rings

Driving back from a job recently, I passed a giant pig carved, crop circle-style, into a hillside planted with cereal. Well, I think I saw it, unless it was fatigue causing me to hallucinate. I hate to put a dent in the excellent Mick Hartley‘s belief that the medium of the crop circle is untainted […]


Having popped out a couple of twins, Israeli bloggess Gloria Salt is back. Via the comments on her most recent post, I stumbled upon the output of “nationally syndicated Libertarian columnist and author” Vin Suprynowicz. Via his commentary on the war in Lebanon… It’s typical for those who crave peace to try compromise and appeasement. […]

Spooky Selection

When I wrote my latest post this morning, I truly had no idea that later on Norm’s “Writer’s Choice” today would be by Jeffrey Wainwright. Since it is, you should go over to Norm’s place and have a read. Like this:Like Loading…

Po-Mo Pomes

I’m planning a technical how-to about writing lyrics so I’ve been doing some background research. During meals I’ve been swotting up on my villanelles and my anadiplosis and my recurrence from a copy of Jeffrey Wainwright‘s Poetry: The Basics that I picked up at the library. It’s informative and an excellent read. At the start […]

My Old Job Wasn’t Like This

I’m booked to shoot a Sunday wedding on an island in the Thames. Unsurprisingly this address confuses my sat nav. When I met the couple there in advance to case the joint, I travelled on public transport with just one camera. Driving is a different matter. I get within a few miles and then do […]

Advanced Level Grocer’s Apostrophe

I saw this handwritten notice outside a shop selling solid wood furniture this morning: TABLE AND TWO BENCH’S £295 Can two wrongs make a technical right? Like this:Like Loading…

Lethal Weapon

The current lead story on The Onion‘s online radio station is: “Mel Gibson Launches Rockets Into Israel“. Like this:Like Loading…

Mad Choons

Yesterday evening, while I was eating me tea, I had the Cambridge Folk Festival on the radio. Luckily I wasn’t paying too much attention to the introductions so I had no advance warning of Salsa Celtica‘s “signature blend of big-band Latin dance music with Scottish accents”. They’re tight as a Highland midge’s nether parts and […]

Dead Trees

“If our readers thought we put climate change on our front pages for the same reason that porn mags put naked women on their front pages, they would stop reading us.” –Ian Birrell, The Independent They’ve certainly stopped reading, Ian, though I suspect this is because your rag has become what someone neatly described as […]

Overdue Linkage

I keep meaning to update my blogroll to include some thoroughly entertaining but low traffic sites like Never Trust A Hippy and Rob Newman, who has discovered more amusing real-life lunacy since I last linked to him, but I want to change the format of the links completely—so, right now, the perfect is getting in […]

Blonde Biology Babe

So obvious I didn’t think of her, though she probably refuses to self-identify as blonde: Hot Wheels Helena! Babes Of Biology No. 3: Miss July[click to enlarge] Helena has a PhD in biotechnology and her interests include killer bugs and driving quickly but very, very safely. If she wins Miss Biology 2007 she’d like to travel around the World as an […]

A Magician

When I was a kid I was fascinated by a 3-D photo viewer called the View-Master. Last night as I lay in bed with my ThinkPad having finished off my latest post on the Wedding Photography Blog, I followed Design | asides from my blogroll there to the Magnum Photos site and experienced the same magic I […]

Shedding Preconceptions

I know more about science than either football or cricket. For my dad it’s the other way round. This means that our conversations about sport often lapse into arguments in which he’ll say something like, “Tom Finney would be a class above if he were playing today.” And I’ll say something like, “Do you know […]

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