ON a recent Saturday wet with the residue of a late morning mist, I ambled along the George IV Bridge in Edinburgh and found myself at the top of Victoria Street. If you are up-to-date with your reading on J K Rowling, you know this is the street she supposedly used as a model for Diagon Alley, that wonderful cobbled creation familiar to all Harry Potter fans.
They are playing with fire and smoke in Bournemouth this week. The fire is courtesy the Carabosse Company, a French performance collective, which has transformed the Lower Gardens into a 'magical fiery landscape'. And the smoke? That's from Fuel, a fantastic group of free-runners and dancers, who are performing in a 360-degree open air theatre by the pier.
You don't need to be a wizard at spelling -- or, for that matter, punctuation -- to be a literary genius. This, I say on the basis of the personal ledger of Scott Fitzgerald. A quick trawl through a transcript now available online shows the man did have an issue with many words, not to mention the possessive apostrophe.
On the day when Gaddafi was threatening to "take the war to Europe", I happened to be flipping through a Playboy publication. Sadly, this one didn’t have any engaging photographs. What it had, though, was impressions of Gaddafi by someone who provoked -- no, taunted -- him in flesh, and came away unscathed.
Suppose, just suppose, there were newspapers when the Pandavas were slugging it out with the Kauravas. The equivalents of The Times of India and The Sun and The New York Times and the BBC. How would the Kurukshetra war and the events that led to it have been narrated?
Here's a site that caters only to beautiful people. You upload your pix, and the members of the opposite sex vote. If they think you are beautiful, you are in. You will be "granted a full membership". Me, I am waiting for the verdict...
Half-Blood Prince opens up the possibility that Voldemort was gay. Or at least that he – pardon the pun – swung that way in his youth. The 11-year-old Tom Riddle manages to look sinister and pretty at the same time and the scene with Horace Slughorn, where he extricates the secret of immorality from the teacher, is a study in silky smiles … and snaky seduction.
I bet you didn’t know this about Simon Cowell: he can do 50 one-handed push-ups. That's pretty good for a man of 49. Bet you don't know his middle name either, nor the fact that he is, ahem, in better shape than a Navy Seal