My idea of heaven

Spending a really golden morning with my 5 year-old daughter Billie (she’s off school recovering from something called Winter Vomiting Virus – nice), reading stories, playing snakes & ladders, making a Balamory collage and listening to the really quite amazing Last FM.

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A lot of ifs

If people of good will turn out to vote in large numbers. If courageous officials and volunteers can see election day through without chaos or fraud or a bloodbath. If candidates are not assassinated en masse once elected. If the Americans (and the British) can be trusted not to drop the Iraqi people like a… Continue reading A lot of ifs

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Not following nofollow

Ben Hammersley reckons Google’s rel=”nofollow” thingie is a bad thing and won’t work anyway. I’m not sure I agree, at least not with the economics part. email spam is hard to discourage because it continues to produce the desired effect (clicks) in a cost-effective way despite pathetic response rates and increasingly effective filters. rel=”nofollow” will… Continue reading Not following nofollow

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How to throw away a natural advantage

The UK cable TV business is a uniquely dysfunctional family, managing to marry epic individual clumsiness with the kind of domestic chaos that continually threatens to bring the whole family down. Having (nearly) overcome the decades of forced disarray produced by its origin in dozens of separate, local companies, the industry’s getting ready for another… Continue reading How to throw away a natural advantage

More divas

Now I feel bad. I forgot to mention that, in the last few weeks we lost two of the most important Old School opera goddesses of all time: Victoria de los Angeles and Renata Tebaldi. In their native countries (Spain and Italy respectively) they were practically worshiped. They were contemporaries of Callas and of comparable… Continue reading More divas

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Xmas toys: good and bad. number 3 – The Incredimobile RC car

This one looked unpromising. I don’t need to tell you that 90% of movie tie-in toys are depressing play-once-and-discard rubbish and I found it difficult to believe that a plastic RC car could buck the trend (much as I loved The Incredibles) but, dear reader, I was wrong. It’s chunky (doors close nicely, roof snaps… Continue reading Xmas toys: good and bad. number 3 – The Incredimobile RC car

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Divas

From the tenuous links dept. (Singers, women, National heroines…). Lovely, long, quite slow-paced and admiring portrait of Mali’s Oumou Sangare from fan and world music expert Lucy Duran on Radio 3 at the weekend (yes, it’ll probably be overwritten by next week’s show so you should drop me a line if you want an MP3).… Continue reading Divas

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eBay people

Like you (I assume), we spent a lot of money on eBay this Xmas – lots of cheap Lego and Hello Kitty and Geomag plus toys that were unobtainable in the shops. Let’s face it, you can get anything on eBay (except a gun) but the experience is very different from shopping at John Lewis… Continue reading eBay people

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