Happy Kissing Friday

Kissing Friday

Yorkshire Pudding confessed to me the other day that his childhood experiences had influenced his later career as a lothario and it seems that this date may be the root cause of his philandering for today is Kissing Friday.

Apparently there is an old Yorkshire tradition that two days after Ash Wednesday, boys are allowed to kiss any girl they choose without fear of a slap round the head or knee in the groin. Read more ›››



Back in 2013, the retail group Argos published research that apparently shows a link between play preferences as child and their future choice of career.

For example, 60% of adults working in design-led jobs, such as architects and designers, enjoyed playing with building blocks as children, 66% working in maths related roles, such as accountants and bankers, preferred puzzles. Read more ›››

Chevalier d'Eon

In 2011, a portrait of an unknown woman appeared at a provincial sale in New York mistakenly attributed to Gilbert Stuart, famous for painting George Washington on the dollar bill.

Even in its dirty state, it was clear that the rather butch woman in the feathered hat was sporting five o'clock shadow and was bought by an intrigued London art dealer who took it home for restoration. Read more ›››

Animal Farming

Dolly the Sheep

Amazing how time flies isn't it. One minute a story is red hot news and before you know it, it has faded like the newsprint in fish and chip paper wrapperings and consigned to history.

I was thinking this as I listened to a feature on the radio about Dolly the Sheep, the first mammal to be cloned from an adult somatic cell, using the process of nuclear transfer. (No, I'm none the wiser either) Read more ›››

Note To Self

Finn Russell

I watched the Scotland and England rugby match on Saturday for no other reason than it happened to be on the BBC. Rugby union about too stop start for my tastes and the rules get more arcane every season – I much prefer rugby league.

But I was interested in the shot of Scotland's Finn Russell at the end of the game that showed markings on the back of his left hand. At first I thought it must be one of those strange tattoos that sportsmen are so keen on these days, but then realised it was actually a numbered list of instructions. Read more ›››

Sunday Round-up

Custard Cream

Crisis of the week: There is a shortage of the nation's favourite biscuits following the floods in January as the McVitie's factory in Carlisle struggles to produce ginger nuts, custard creams, bourbons, water biscuits and those little packets of shortbread you find in hotel rooms. Very worrying and all too reminiscent of the Great Fig Roll Crisis of '08. Read more ›››

Bottom Gear

Top Gear

I was on my blogging sabbatical when Jeremy Clarkson was sacked from Top Gear last year for throwing that punch he threw that left Oisin Tymon needing a trip to the local A&E department in his reasonably priced car.

And I was pretty cross. I know Clarkson isn't everyone's cup of tea, but I quite enjoy his journalism, even if I don't necessarily agree with his politics. Read more ›››

Camila Batmanghelidjh

Funny how the mind plays tricks isn't it? As others have observed, Camila Batmanghelidjh, the disgraced boss of Kids Company, does a very good impression of the late Ronnie Barker in drag.

I had a memory of Ronnie dressed as Carmen Miranda for one of the Two Ronnies musical numbers because that's the image I now have in mind whenever I think of Camila, which isn't often I must confess. Read more ›››