Posted in July 2012

Bad Habits from Humans

Bad Habits from Humans

A female orang utang in a Java zoo has been moved away from the public to try to cure her smoking habit. For a decade tourists have been throwing lit cigarettes into her cage, ignoring signs asking them not to do so. It seems the only way to save her is to remove her from … Continue reading

Plantagenets go to Portugal

Plantagenets go to Portugal

John of Gaunt, the Duke of Lancaster, and fourth son of Edward III claimed to be the King of Castille, partly due to his second wife ex-Infanta Constance, eldest daughter of the late King Pedro the Cruel of Castille.  His belief was of course supported by the English but he had to convince the Castillians, … Continue reading

Eating On The Buses

Eating On The Buses

We are into the silly season for newspapers, but this is a gem: CCTV on a bus in Devon has shown a man on the number 12 bus in Paignton eating the seat. He then picked at the hole to make it bigger. He caused only £200 of damage. I know the English diet can … Continue reading

Men in Teaching

Men in Teaching

It is several decades since women won the fight for equal pay, which makes is really sad how polarised gender roles continue to be, at least in the crucial field of primary education. There is a desperate shortage of male primary school teachers in this country – anecdotaly I am hearing it is something like … Continue reading

Bring on the Czechs

Bring on the Czechs

People are already asking, where were you during the Olympic opening ceremony? I was asleep. It had been a long day. The seagulls have been waking me up every night. I just went upstairs to get something, and all of a sudden it was dark outside. When I surfaced, the athletes were arriving and we … Continue reading

William Was Not Alone

William Was Not Alone

William Herschell (1738-1822) is famous for his pioneering astronomy, specifically for his discovery of the planet Uranus and two of its moons. He was born in Hnnover, but when their ruling family became the rulers of Britain, many Germans followed in search of employment. He began as a military musician, and spent much of his … Continue reading

The Boss is Human

The Boss is Human

For forever, admitting to having mental health problems has  been acceptable only in Woody Allen films where they spend a fortune on therapy, though they never seem to get any better. Now  it seems to almost be an epidemic of it among the rich and famous. Now The Boss has fessed up to suffering depression. … Continue reading

Travelling with St Thomas’s Leg

Travelling with St Thomas’s Leg

Today’s i newspaper had a great story, about a school in Lancashire’s collection which they are trying to make accessible to the public via the Christian Heritage Centre. Ho hum, you may be thinking, but this is Britain’s largest collection of religious relics. In Europe there is still enough Catholicism scattered through communities that the … Continue reading

A Single Anti Royalist Horse

A Single Anti Royalist Horse

In 1876 Edward Prince of Wales made what was claimed by Portugese newspapers the first official visit of an English prince to their country, but it was actually the second, after JOhn of Gaunt had visited with his daughter Phillipa, the future queen. He had already been feted in Spain, then they arrived by train … Continue reading