If it’s news to me, it must be news to you!
Sign of the times 1: Forget the year of the Black Death or the Spanish Flu, medieval historian Michael McCormick believes the year 536 AD was the worst to be alive when a mysterious fog plunged Europe, the Middle East, and parts of Asia into darkness for eighteen months.
Keepie uppies: A group of women MPs were shown the red card after having a kick about on the floor of the House of Commons.
Nibbles: Sainsbury’s became the first UK supermarket to stock edible insects with the Eat Grub’s Smoky BBQ Crunchy Roasted Crickets.
#NotARetailStore: Twitter’s Christmas ad features John Lewis of Blacksburg, Virginia, who receives 50,000 tweets a year from people who mistakenly think they are talking to the department store. His replies have made him a bit of a celebrity.
Form an orderly clue: Another in my growing list of job opportunities – how about being a taste-tester for pigs in blankets for the Christmas menu at the Oast House in Manchester? There’s £500 in it for you.
Fresh eyes: What age were you when you first noticed the number eight hidden in the eight of diamonds? Speaking of optical illusions, here is a really weird one for Thanksgiving. Follow the instructions and watch the video from around the two-minute mark until the turkey appears.
Unhappy meals: A dad in Canada is suing Macdonald’s for breaching ‘child advertising laws’ – because his kids demand regular Happy Meals.
Good manners: Researchers at McMaster University analyzed 37 million tweets from 2015-16 and found that Canadians are much more polite than Americans.
Snowflakes: Hasbro has released Monopoly for Millennials. Instead of collecting property, players amass ‘experience’ points by visiting a vegan bistro or attending a meditation retreat. The tag line reads: ‘Forget real estate. You can’t afford it anyway’.
Sheepish: Animal rights activists have asked the village of Wool in Dorset to change its name because it ‘promotes cruelty to sheep’.
Black Friday: Online shopping and alcohol don’t mix as a Chinese man discovered on his country’s equivalent of Black Friday. He found he had ordered a Thai mini pig, a peacock and a giant salamander.
And if that isn’t lesson enough, a Newcastle man bought a six-foot Pokemon toy when drunk and then had one hell of a job getting it home.
Brief lives: Little House on the Prairie actress Katherine MacGregor; actor John Bluthal who played Frank Pickle in The Vicar of Dibley; the BBC’s first newsreader Richard Baker and; designer of the yellow Brazil football shirt Aldyr Schlee.