Category Archives: UK

Don’t Go!

Given a lot of the Yes campaigners’ rhetoric, it’s possibly not wise of me, an anti, to suggest to wavering Scots that they should read a blogpost by a pro-intervention Conservative MP in England, but, apart from someone’s friends-only Facebook update, this is the piece I’ve read about the independence vote, taking place today, that […]

Burning Down The House

This summary/graphic by Tim Montgomerie of The Times is fun. It imagines the four parties Britain would have if we started from scratch. If we did do such an experiment with voters—if we asked them about real policy choices—I don’t believe that these are the clusters would emerge; most people, especially English people, believe hotchpotches of […]

Levy & Counsell podcast 4: National Manners, International Diplomacy, and Statehood at the United Nations

Over at Ricochet.com, our producer Scott named this podcast The Politics of Petulance after an article of the same name by David Horovitz in the Times Of Israel that Judith and I mention towards the end of our discussion. There are a few other sources I’d like to give credit to: Yau-Man Chan at Skepticblog writing about the curious cult of […]

Levy & Counsell podcast 2: Special Edition

Judith and I discuss current events in Israel for Ricochet.com. The sound is better all round this time, though it’s clear I’m going to have to work on being a bit slicker. It’s possibly a good thing that I talk slowly out of a fear of saying something stupid. To quote one of our listners […]

Rulers and Riders

To try out my exciting multiple-choice plugin, test your knowledge of 18th-century British Prime Ministers and contemporary British competitive horseriders by guessing which of the two categories each of the following named individuals falls into.

A Face-Saving Exercise

The BBC reports: A former soldier who was jailed for refusing to fight in Afghanistan has handed back a medal in protest at Britain’s involvement in the war. “There’s a real up-swell of awareness now among military families and among the military, and among the people in this country, that this conflict is, has kind […]

v v good fun

This [HD YouTube video] is a bonkers slab of wonderfully British-sounding soul-pop from V VBrown. Shame about the over-compressed production/mixing/mastering that turns every peak into white noise. This [HD YouTube video—censored version] is an equally bonkers slab of ironic hair metal from the self-proclaimed “modern Spinal Tap“, Steel Panther. I know it’s meant to be a […]

Where Are They Now?—Taff Trot / Brummie Schoolboy Edition

Back in the 80s, I used to be in a band with a guy called Martyn Hope—indeed, we went to school together. Back in the 90s, having read that, surreally, Elvis revivalist Shakin’ Stevens was a closet Red1, I went searching online to find out if he was a member of a late 70s cohort […]

“It’s not the despair; I can cope with the despair. It’s the hope I can’t stand.”

Cornershop Man watches every single cricket international he can on his satellite TV under the counter—and, unlike me, he fails the Tebbit test. At the start of the week, I asked him: “Suppose you’re looking forward to whupping England’s backsides?” “Hmm,” he inhaled, “I don’t know. You’ve got some good bowlers with you. You could […]

Jumpers For Goalposts

[UPDATE: For the hordes arriving here after searching for the comedy catchphrase “Jumpers for goalposts”, you’d probably be better off reading this.] Yesterday afternoon, I interrupted some desk-bound consulting work that, even if I weren’t prevented by an NDA from doing so, would put you to sleep instantly if I told you about it, to […]

Let’s Saint George!

While I’m on a Radio 4 kick, I heard Mark Lawson interviewing the soon-to-be-stepping-down Andrew Motion and Andy Burnham, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, on Front Row yesterday evening about the appointment of the next Poet Laureate. Apparently, although they were quick to say it wouldn’t be a TV talent contest, there’s going […]

Those Beige Headlines In Full

TIGER WOODS WINS 2008 US OPEN DESPITE KNEE INJURY CAUSED BY ILLEGAL KARATE ATTACK FROM EVIL MAFIA GOLFER ROCCO MEDIATE. OBTAINS CRUCIAL PAR SCORE ON SUDDEN-DEATH HOLE USING “CRANE KICK” BEFORE COLLAPSING ON THE FINAL GREEN IN AGONY, MUTTERING “I DID IT FOR YOU, ELIN!” LEWIS HAMILTON CLINCHES WORLD F1 DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP IN HIS MCLAREN, […]

How I Became A Blogger

My getting into this game had nothing to do with some kind of 9/11 epiphany. No, it was the insanity of the property bubble that started me writing spoofs and screeds on the Web, originally at the excellent, skeptical, principled, and free Motley Fool UK site. I retired from posting on its “Property: Markets and […]

“That they may see your good works”

I like that one of the authors of this US paper describing gene therapy to restore sight in sufferers from a rare form of blindness, itself a refinement of a treatment first given in the UK, is called “Elizabeth Windsor”: “One of the patients said that the dim red light from his alarm clock had […]

John The Savage and Bela Emerson

This week, I saw John The Savage and Bela Emerson at Komedia. John The Savage is an experimental post-something-or-other band featuring my friend Richard Brincklow on piano. Don’t be put off by my arty-sounding and vague description. They have tunes and they can play. They groove and they rawk. But they’re also very unusual indeed. […]

Good Sports

In the summer of 2006, a particular grim one for British sport, this blog made public the list of new events planned for the 2012 London Olympics. Following the nation’s successes in Beijing, that has been further revised to include the following, again in alphabetical order: 4×4 Hundred-School Run Aussie Baiting Chopper-, Grifter-, Strika-, and […]

Men Are From Mars…

Both of these photos are from the same wedding, at the most excellent Barn at Bury Court. I took the first on one side of the venue (with my camera in a transparent shower cap to protect it from the rain) and the second, later, on the other side, when the rain had stopped. Boys […]

“At least we’re still ahead of New Zealand.”

One of the sweetest things about beating the Aussies is that they are spectacularly bad losers.

Brighton Carnival 2008

A fortnight ago, I shot the Brighton School of Samba at Brighton’s Second revived carnival. Congratulations to them. They went on to win the prize for best band.

Job Creation Scheme

Surely Margaret Thatcher doesn’t want a state funeral? I mean, that would require the government to pay people to dig a hole and fill it up again.

“Let Them Eat Smoke!”

Norm asks two questions: People on the wrong end of social and economic inequalities don’t just experience health disadvantages from smoking, but disadvantages across the board – in every area of health, in life expectancy, in the pattern of life chances in general. Shall we impose compulsory legal norms about diet, about exercise, about whatever […]

Merrit

Do you remember Wei? Well, Wei… …wed… …Bobby… …in Edinburgh earlier this month, and I was hired to shoot the event. It wasn’t my first tri-lingual wedding, but it was my first Cantonese/Mandarin/Scottish one. And it was the first one from which the happy couple excused me in the small hours because the tea ceremony […]

Late Local Election Result

Boris Johnson‘s Hair: still No Overall Control.

Signs Of The Times

The “pictures” included a front-page one of the torturer dressed in a pink nurse’s outfit that stopped just above the tops of her black stockings For those of you not up to date with the PooterGeek soap opera, having been made redundant from my first permanent job in science (when the Medical Research Council closed […]

When Brighton Hen Parties Go Bad

Future News: Headlines Of 2108

NASA ASTRONAUTS ARRIVE ON CENTAURI IV AND ENCOUNTER POPULATION OF HUMANOIDS SO PRIMITIVE THAT THEY STILL HAVE FACEBOOK ACCOUNTS. PANEL OF HISTORIANS VOTES ON MOST HATED FIGURES OF 21ST CENTURY. SADDAM HUSSEIN, CLONED HITLER, HEATHER MILLS-MCCARTNEY TOP POLL. HUMPHREY LYTTELTON FORCED TO STAND DOWN AS PRESENTER OF I’M SORRY I HAVEN’T A CLUE AFTER EXPOSURE […]

Parallel Lives

It’s all over for the ‘Head On the front page of The Spectator online, Fraser Nelson suggests that David Cameron could be “the British [Barack] Obama“, which struck me as a coincidence, because I am the British Gore Vidal.

Gallery: England Struggles To Rebuild Its Shattered Infrastructure In The Aftermath Of Hurricane Nigella

I’d like to take this opportunity to reassure my readers that I survived the horrors of this morning, and am now doing all I can to help with the aid effort and piece together the scattered fragments of my life. Here is my photographic tribute to those who were less fortunate:

Guests? But I Haven’t Hoovered For Days!

A couple of my friends txted me this morning to let me know that PooterGeek is in The Guardian‘s Guide today. Unfortunately, as has been the case for most of the past week, I’m too busy to write anything new and the best-of section is over a year out of date. Come back next week, […]

Not English

Just back from lunch watching the first half of Villa versus Newcastle at my local. (Joey Barton is a dirty…) I live dahn Sarf now so there were about five people apart from me interested in the Midlands against the North-East dotted around the fairly large TV room. In walks a big black Senegalese bloke […]