Sunday Round-up

My round-up of news, events and stuff and nonsense from the last seven days.
If it’s news to me, it must be news to you!

Bricking it: Theresa May’s choice of a brickwork backdrop for her big speech on housing was meant to say ‘strong and stable’ although most people thought it made her look like she had popped up from a chimney.

And on that subject, it is worth reading Craig Brown’s strong and stable guide to May-speak. How does he get away with it in the Daily Mail?

In part two, I guffawed at: Kind of country we want to be: ‘The kind of country we want to be is a modern, open, outward-looking, tolerant, European democracy. In fact, just like the one we have at the moment. And that’s why it’s so vitally important to accept change with open arms because without change we won’t stay the same.’

Old news: The oldest message in a bottle has been washed up on a Western Australia shore 132 years after being thrown overboard from a German ship.

Flippin’ marvellous: Time was when getting a university degree would at least get you a job flipping burgers but even that career opportunity is under threat by Flippy, the burger-flipping robot.

Balls: When he isn’t busy arranging assassinations (allegedly), Vladamir Putin enjoys nothing more than a game of keepy-uppy to mark 100 days to the opening of the World Cup. With some judicious editing.

Only in Japan: Farms near Kisarazu City are being protected by a horrifying robot wolf designed to scare off animals that eat the crops.

Pointless pun: Best Tweet of the week from quiz show presenter Richard Osman: Dicken’s ‘A Tale Of Two Cities’ was first serialised in two local newspapers. “It was the Bicester Times, it was The Worcester Times”

In cyberspace, everyone can hear you scream: An analysis of more than 4.5 million tweets and retweets posted from 2006 to 2017 indicates that inaccurate news stories spread faster and further on the social media platform than true stories. This bears out the oft-quoted ‘A lie can run around the world before the truth has got its boots on.’

Careless clicking costs: A man bought a hundred-year-old fairground carousel by accident landing him with a bill of £245,000.

Brief lives: Crystals singer Barbara Ann Alston; saviour of the Flying Scotsman William McAlpine; founder of the Tower Records stores Russ Solomon; Fiorentina defender David Astori; pioneering genome scientist John Sulston; Toy Story animator Bud Luckey who designed Woody; inventor of the wind-up radio Trevor Bayliss; the first sub-four-minute miler Roger Bannister who could still only manage the runner-up spot in the 1954 Sports Personality of the Year.

And of course, the end of the printed New Musical Express.

Nobody’s prefect. If you find any spelling mistakes or other errors in this post, please let me know by highlighting the text and pressing Ctrl+Enter.

2 comments… Add yours
  • Trevor Rowley 12th March 2018

    Although I wouldn’t say that Roger Bannister was a boyhood hero of mine, I would nonetheless say that I admired his achievements in athletics. He belonged to that forgotten era of “gentlemen athletes” who took part in their sports as well as undertaking their studies at a major university. They weren’t at university to specialise in athletics as most of them were serious students who would go on to achieve status in medicine, science, commerce etc. His British contemporaries were Chris Chataway and Chris Brasher, who took part with him in his memorable sub-four minute mile race – I think they each ran as his pacemakers.

    At about that time (the mid to late Fifties) the foreign competition came from Vladimir Kuts (the Ukranian-born Soviet runner) and Emil Zatopek (Czechoslovakia). This really was a golden age of long distance running with sponsorships and professional status still a long, long way away.

    One interesting fact about Roger Bannister, he was born in March 1929 and arrived at Oxford University in the autumn of 1946 when he was just seventeen. In the modern era, we expect our university entrants to have advanced level qualifications under their belts, arriving at their university at about the age of nineteen. Not sure how Roger managed it – perhaps wartime speeded up the university procedures.

    Reply
  • Roger O Green 14th March 2018

    I loved Roger Bannister. Great first name, did good stuff with his life.

    Reply

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