Friday, 04 September 2015

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Opinion & columns

Read all about it - we bookworms are emerging again

We bookish types used to be considered a bit weird – you know, stand-offish, antisocial, slightly sinister.

Last updated 5 September 2014
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It's time to man-up and pull through first-day traumas

Difficult times loom for families facing the first day of school next week. Tears and tantrums, nail-biting and hand-wringing... and that’s just the dads.

Last updated 29 August 2014
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The battle to make towns the centre of attention

Long, long time ago when I wore socks and Jesus still wanted me for a sunbeam, I had absolute belief that nothing would change.

Last updated 22 August 2014
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The crutch of the matter with someone I bumped into

You may remember – or perhaps not – my having had an unfortunate encounter with a man on a bike, one early morning a couple of winters ago.

Last updated 15 August 2014
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I’m persevering with the German - Vorsprung durch Technik

The new car arrived last week. It’s German. And in the interests of entente cordiale – or whatever the German equivalent might be – we’re doing the bonding thing.

Last updated 8 August 2014
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Remember now, before it’s too late to ask questions

My grandfather came home from the Great War a man broken by mustard gas and haunted by the recurring terrors he couldn’t forget. But at least he came home.

Last updated 1 August 2014
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Stop getting hot under the collar and accept I’m right!

First things first. It isn’t a heatwave, it’s summer – though there’s every reason not to remember the difference.

Last updated 25 July 2014
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Ditch the pink... it’s time for power-dressing pick-me-ups

This has been a good week for power-dressing women – which probably explains why I’ve had such a bad one.

Last updated 18 July 2014
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A whirlwind romance with long lost love in the aisles

I’ve broken my duck! For seven years, I’ve been avoiding supermarkets like a nasty viral infection – shopping local for knobbly carrots, dirty potatoes, parish pump gossip and the priceless self-congratulatory smugness a life of back to basics in a small market town brings.

Last updated 11 July 2014
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New bras, please! Anyone for a game of topless tennis?

If you’re watching properly, it’s a pain in the neck. Serve and return, backhand to forehand, eyes right, turn left... and then your head hurts.

Last updated 4 July 2014
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I’d hack a heavy wig to put PM on his naughty step

If I could have chosen to be anyone other than myself this week, I would have liked to have been the judge who put the Prime Minister on the naughty step.

Last updated 27 June 2014
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Blame my lack of sporting interest on the bossa nova

In deference to matters currently obsessional, I was wondering what to do to be temporarily – well, Brazilian. No! Not that! Do keep it clean at the back of the room.

Last updated 20 June 2014
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A parachute jump back to days of make do and mend

A lady called Hazel told me this week that her mother’s wedding dress had been made from a parachute... which I thought was pretty cool. “Even better,” said Hazel, noticing my interest, “there was enough material left over for matching knickers!”

Last updated 6 June 2014
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Cheapest NHS prescription - eat less, move more

Life’s full of used-to-bes. Crammed to the gunwales and depressingly likely to grow fuller with each passing year. Nothing’s more certain than a stash of backward glances.

Last updated 30 May 2014
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He shoots himself in the foot and scores an own goal

I don’t know much about football but I do know a bit about emails, a lot about men who behave badly, and more about women likely to belittle blokes who deserve it.

Last updated 23 May 2014
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Time to give this pally banter in schools idea a Miss

She was tall, thin, beautifully dressed, with a look of Wallis Simpson about her and, my goodness, she was fierce.

Last updated 16 May 2014
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Bahamas island? Blencathra? It’s too much trouble

He was perhaps a tad too excited to have remembered the detail entirely accurately – but he obviously meant well.

Last updated 9 May 2014
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Looking forward to gardening and growing old and silly

Brace yourselves – the gardening gloves are coming out. May has arrived and with it comes the cue for getting down and dirty in beds and borders. That’s the law of fair weather horticulturists.

Last updated 2 May 2014
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Blob! Blazer Boy! Grow up and stop acting like children

Back to school week. You’ll have noticed the change. Truculence, pent up annoyance, dark scowls and bitter complaints about getting up early, arriving home late, being told what to do... and that’s just the teachers.

Last updated 25 April 2014
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Our princely friend helps us to realise we are special

Always good to have friends in high places. Even better to be on matey terms with the kind of chums who don’t mind stepping down in the world to drop in on our more humble abodes on occasion.

Last updated 11 April 2014
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Should there be heavier fines for dog owners who don't pick up their dog's mess?



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