Category Archives: Uncategorized

Architectural follies (pt 286)

The Paddington Pole may be history, but there’s another monstrosity on the way. Simon Jenkins uncovers a new threat to the London skyline. Eager to dress it up as “art”, [Renzo] Piano is quoted in the Architects’ Journal mouthing the usual architect’s … Continue reading

Posted in Architecture, London, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , ,

The ballad of a disillusioned Bob Dylan fan

” I can honestly say I want everyone’s money back…” Not entirely fair, maybe, but very, very droll. No one writes wittier songs than Rich Hall.

Posted in Music, Uncategorized | Tagged ,


Dusk at La Baie des Anges, Raoul Dufy.

Posted in Uncategorized


Parvez had been a taxi driver for twenty years. Half that time he’d worked for the same firm. Like him, most of the other drivers were Punjabis. They preferred to work at night, the roads were clearer and the money … Continue reading

Posted in Literature, Notebook, Uncategorized | Tagged ,

“Normal service will be resumed shortly.”

The two main parties today… Meanwhile,  on Twitter and Facebook disappointed Remainers are busy sneering at all those people foolish enough to have voted for Brexit. And enlightened Londoners, aghast at what’s happened,  are ready to declare independence. Not a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

Family portrait, Pietermaritzberg

“In one portrait, everyone is dressed in Western clothes except for two young women, who are, by Zulu custom, bare from the waste up, indicating that they’re still single.” Photos lost and found from a neighbourhood studio. [HT @newyorker via … Continue reading

Posted in Africa, Photography, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , ,


When I was young I pretended to know everything. It often got me into trouble and made me look a fool. I think one of the most useful discoveries I ever made was how easy it is to say: “I … Continue reading

Posted in Literature, Notebook, Uncategorized | Tagged

The golden age of newspapers

Away from base at the moment, I’m re-reading one of my favourite Arnold Bennett novels, “The Card”. Apart from being the wry, picaresque story of Douglas Henry “Denry” Machin, a huckster with a heart of gold, it also contains a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

The decline and fall of newspapers

“‘Facebook media’ is a serious menance to a healthy democracy.”  Discuss. Via @amonck

Posted in Uncategorized

Consumer central

At Heathrow Terminal 5, where I’m surrounded by luxurious junk when all I really need is a bookshop and two bananas. The deluxe shops have hardly any customers in them, the public areas are crammed full. Why do airports have … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized