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2018 Tour de France: AKA ‘Three Men in a Tent’

The original tale, ‘Three Men in a Boat’ by Jerome K. Jerome tells of three friends rowing their way along the Thames toward Oxford. The pals consider themselves capable outdoorsmen, though they have trouble with simple outdoor survival skills and tend to find themselves holed-up in local hostelries a little too often. Setting up a tent flummoxes them, cooking on a camp stove proves way too complicated, before they eventually ditch the boat and take the train back to London.

cometh the hour…

Ingerland, Ingerland…In-ger-land!

With an anticipated twenty million of us watching the home team play our first knock-out-round match in over a decade, it’s safe to say Russia’s 2018 world cup has been a success. And even though they went out at the group stage, with a pretty ignominious one-point from a 1-1 draw with Argentina, I’d also like to highlight that this year’s tournament was another huge success for our North Sea neighbours, Iceland.

bulldog spirit

If you haven’t yet treated yourself to the youtube clip of Double Diamond Danny Dyer’s interview with Piers Morgan wrt to the host’s biggest bromancer, Dave Cameron, please do so without further delay. Calling-out the ex-Prime Minister, and begetter of Brexit, was truly something to behold and the former Brexiter’s explicit use of the ‘T’ word (as well as the unforgettable ‘trotters’!) ensures his position within the pantheon of unabashed remainers for life. I’m expecting Danny to replace Vinnie as leader of the Liberal party before the week’s out.

the art of the deal

With over a trillion dollars being spanked on mergers & acquisitions in the first quarter alone, 2018 is shaping-up as a helluva year for deal makers the world over. And with the recent Clydesdale & Yorkshire Bank’s swallowing of Branson’s Virgin Money, the pace shows no sign of abating anytime soon. Having once sold a bit of a company, before then seeing it flogged to a US organization, I know first-hand that such deals always make sense. On paper at least.

putting the genie back in the bottle

Someone pointed out to me t’other day that the most innovative advancement of their shiny new iPhone8 was that they were able, via a special pad, to experience wireless charging as opposed to going through all the hassle of…er, plugging in a cable. At the risk of pointing out the blindingly obvious that, with the pad still needing to be plugged in you can still only charge the device in one place, are these marginal, and seemingly irrelevant, advancements what we’ve come to expect from technology?

shakespeare in swimwear

T’other day I caught a glimpse of myself in a heated debate concerning a subject that divides the nation, pits father against son, mother against daughter, polarises opinion wrt leave or remain and currently engulfs the majority of media airtime, and let me tell you a pretty sight it wasn’t. Yes, Love Island’s back on the tele and you need to decide what side of the divide you’re on.

eat, drink, exercise and be merry

We live in such an inquisitive society today that when someone pegs it we invariably want to know why and how, and did they bring it on themselves or could they have dodged the bullet? I’m now at ‘that’ age where I’m slightly more aware of my mortality than I used to be, and, like most of my peers, do obsess a little about my health and likely longevity. However, I drink too much and, if you’re one of the few who consider midnight doner kebabs to be bad, then I certainly have a highly questionable diet.

a card to trump all

OK, OK, enough already. Having served-up for your delectation the analyses of Vlad the Impaler and Ming the Merciless it was only a matter of time before THE BIG ONE was to follow. But with so much opinion already out there, most of it highly subjective and polarised, it’s difficult to get to the fact of the matter and the heart of the man. Let’s start with some unabashed truths…

brave new world

Over the last month, wee Tom, has been wrestling with the decision of whether he should stay within his stable, long-term, relatively well-paid chosen career of teaching or strike-out on his Jack-Jones and place himself at the mercy of the booming gig economy. Having taken a somewhat similar decision thirty years ago, I’ve been able to see both sides and have voiced an opinion or two when asked, but it’s his shout: you pays your money, you takes your choice.

vive le republique

To completely misquote latter-day US film & TV bombshell Mae West “Marriage is a fine institution but I’m just not ready for the institution of monarchy!” No, my problem’s not Harry and Meghan, my problem’s the monarchy. And when it comes to royal events, especially one relieving the public purse of £32,000,000.00, it’s this institution that remains in the dock. It could of course have been done quietly and, God forbid, privately, but to be the effective and powerful symbol it needed to be, it had to be supersized, in glorious technicolour.

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