Category: Opinion

Giving Silly a Bad Name

There was something reassuringly primal about the scenes in last night’s astonishing opening episode of Planet Earth 2. Aside from the fighting dragons and penguins doing back-flips from a volcano, there was the less-than-smooth first steps into the world taken by the oddly cute looking marine iguanas. Hatching from their shells, buried a few inches into the sand of a seemingly empty landscape, a baby iguana blinked in its new and strange environment. “Oh,” it (for this is a gender non-specific iguana) muttered, to nobody “What’s all this then?” Taking a few tentative steps away from their shell lair,...

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The Trouble With Mass Debating On Social Media

I love Game of Thrones. Actually, I was a bit of a latecomer to the saga – both in book and TV form. This is not unusual for me. I have quite the track record of becoming massively into things ages after huge swathes of the population have not only taken it to their hearts but, in many cases, have moved on to other obsessions. For instance, I’ve recently found that I rather like Nirvana – the band as opposed to the state. I really wasn’t all that fussed back in the early 90s, when pretty much everyone else...

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Dreaming of Port Louis

Mauritius is a smallish island in the Indian Ocean which is notoriously tricky to spell right first time. It’s not too far from the coast of Africa and just next door to Madagascar, the island which is now famous for being a cartoon. It’s a beautiful island, with lush inland vegetation belying its volcanic base, and spectacular coastlines – stretches of white sand beaches and lagoons of azure blue sea, created by a network of densely populated coral reef. Drive through the rural interior and you’ll discover mile upon mile of sugar plantations, once the biggest industry on the...

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Those Old Familiar Things

“They play the songs on the radio, ringing bells and frightful weather – its beginning to look a lot like Christmas. “ Having children around sharpens the imagery, heightens the expectation – it’s their time. A week to go – a week of goodwill and treats; where pens are put down and games are played. Where toys are brought in from home; where songs are sung and posted lists are discussed with fevered anticipation. Will he come, will he bring the scooter, the Xbox, the Ipod touch? They play the songs on the radio as we dress for the...

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A Few Words About Autumn

    I love this time of year   Yes, I am more than aware of the fact that loving the autumn for its vibrant colours and its fresh, slightly chilled air is veering dangerously close to the realms of writer’s cliché but, frankly I couldn’t give the cuss of three tinkers. I do love the changing colours of the trees, the swirl of golden leaves as they dance on icy blasts of wind, the way the sun’s rays glint off the damp roads and, perhaps, most of all, I love that autumn, despite being the final throes of...

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