Awards Ceremonies

In praise of Perspex pyramids Has there ever been an autumn like it? Some have marvelled at the raspberries, some at the late profusion of the roses. But for some of us the real miracle of the season has been the fantastic crop of awards ceremonies. Across the nation this November proud new places have been found on office walls for framed documents proclaiming that the recipient has been named the Personality of the Year 2006 by the Federation of Insurance Brokers or the Outstanding Performer of the Year by the Meat Packaging Association. Tens of thousands of shiny new trophies now stand on the sideboards of UK plc: strange crystal chacmools; clods of bronze, ideal for braining a burglar; Perspex pyramids that you might use to scrape ice off the windscreen; and even today, with Christmas almost upon us, the national orgy of prize-giving is not quite over. Continue reading Awards Ceremonies

Computer Games

The writing is on the wall - computer games rot the brain It's the snarl that gives the game away. It's the sobbing and the shrieking and the horrible pleading -- that's how you know your children are undergoing a sudden narcotic withdrawal. As the strobing colours die away and the screen goes black, you listen to the wail of protest from the offspring and you know that you have just turned off their drug, and you know that, to a greater or lesser extent, they are addicts. Some children have it bad. Some are miraculously unaffected. But millions of seven- to 15-year-olds are hooked, especially boys, and it is time someone had the guts to stand up, cross the room and just say no to Nintendo. It is time to garrotte the Game Boy and paralyse the PlayStation, and it is about time, as a society, that we admitted the catastrophic effect these blasted gizmos are having on the literacy and the prospects of young males. Continue reading Computer Games

Rule of Law

CAYBSDG1.jpg One law for the rich, another for Mr Bhatt and his baseball bat That's what we all love about our country. It's the rule of law, innit. No one is above the law. Everyone is equal under the law. No one can take the law into his own hands. That's why there will be at least a handful of reasonable people who think that the police did the right thing when they cracked down on my friend the newsagent Harendra Bhatt. Continue reading Rule of Law

The Oldie Lunch

P1010074.JPG The Oldie Lunches The Oldie isn't a magazine for the old. Readers of all ages who are intelligent, lively minded and appreciative of good writing and good company find it an indispensable antidote to the triviality of the 21st century. On Tuesday 31st October 2006, Boris spoke at the lunch in Henley-on-Thames with Sir John Mortimer and Colin Thubron. You are invited to join any forthcoming Oldie Lunch - see here Continue reading The Oldie Lunch

British Films

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promoting national culture at every stage it will be up to some bureaucrat in the Department of Culture to decide how British you really are...
How we laughed at these comic new regulations about films With 15 new regulations coming out of Westminster every week it is no wonder that sometimes we in the Opposition give way to the sin of despair. Sometimes we just slump back on the green benches and watch as Labour blizzards the landscape with legislation, like some out-of-control alpine snow machine. Sometimes we shut our eyes, unable to do anything to stop the avalanche of paper; and sometimes we have a peek, and we actually read something that has just been adopted by our rulers, and we feel we are in danger of going mad. Continue reading British Films