On the passing of a northern reticent

The Irish poet Seamus Heaney has died, aged 74. Taken from Alphabets, a work cited by the Swedish Academy when in 1995 its members award Heaney the Nobel Prize in Literature “for works of lyrical beauty and ethical depth, which exalt everyday miracles and the living past”… Here in her snooded garment and bare feet, […]

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Damned if you do – cyclists and red lights

Yesterday afternoon, whilst riding my bike through central London, I was rammed by a bus. I say rammed, but the collision was little more than a tap that had me jolt forward by a few centimetres. Still, context is everything, so let me explain what happened. Riding west along Oxford Street, insanely busy as it […]

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Syria omnishambles – Miliband Minor does smug

UK Labour leader Ed Miliband has reportedly been branded a “fucking cunt and copper-bottomed shit” by unnamed government insiders, after he threatened to derail a planned parliamentary vote on military action against a Syrian regime which no-one in their right mind doubts is responsible for using chemical weapons against its own population. “I’m determined we […]

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Cycle ride: Thames Path blackberry harvest, 31 August 2013

Where: Thames Path blackberry harvest When: Saturday 31 August 2013 Meet: 10:00 @ Cutty Sark Gardens, SE10 9LW I realise that Anthony Austin of Greenwich Cyclists organised led a blackberry picking ride along the Thames Path on Sunday last, but the berry season is short, and you can never have enough of the things in […]

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On Chelsea Manning

Chelsea Manning. That’s how it is; that’s who she is. Now. A hero, flawed like every other, but no less a hero. Should it be heroine? Does it matter? Probably not. Thank you Chelsea, for your service.

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Locals rally around Greenwich and Woolwich foot tunnels

The following is a press release distributed by me today on behalf of a new community group in southeast and east London. For more than a century the people of London have crossed the River Thames through foot tunnels at Greenwich and Woolwich which owe their existence to that great Victorian working class hero Will […]

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Farewell to India’s scourge of the godmen

Narendra Dabholkar was a popular man in Pune. This much-loved social activist was known internationally as well as his native Maharashtra as a sharp critic of superstitious religion, having founded the Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti, or Committee for the Eradication of Blind Faith. Dabholkar, 67, was shot dead on Tuesday morning. Campaigning secularists are globally under […]

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David in no-win situation with Goliath

A latter-day David may have been denied his Miranda rights, but one has to ask why the non-journalist partner of Guardian investigator Glenn Greenwald was used as an international document courier, with his travel and other costs underwritten by the British newspaper. The nine-hour detention and interrogation of David Miranda under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism […]

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It probably isn’t acid that turns people into casualties

We shall have to blame society or some other fanciful notion rather than psychedelics for drug-induced madness. Or at least new research has shown that the use of hallucinogenic drugs such as LSD and magic mushrooms does not increase a the risk of developing mental health problems. It could even be beneficial. Trondheim-based psychologists Teri […]

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Cycle ride: Greenwich to Richmond Park (aka Fenton’s Fancy)

Where: Greenwich to Richmond Park (aka Fenton’s Fancy) When: Saturday 17 August 2013 Meet: 10:00 @ General Wolfe statue in Greenwich Park (by the Observatory entrance) Owing to Dog & Bell Commissar and Matriarch of Lewisham Cyclists Jane Davis’ postponement of her ever popular South London parks ride, originally scheduled for this Saturday, I have […]

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