Non-original bangers


Nine cover versions that are better than the originals. Because it is possible. (Disclaimer: They are not all bangers; I just love that word.)

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First world my arse

Because my mother was traumatically uprooted at 11 and taken to Benoni, where she was bullied by schoolmates and called a ‘bladdy immagrant’ by teachers (she even had to do a subject called ‘immigrant Afrikaans’), England became a weird nostalgic Utopia for her, and I was brought up to believe it was heavenly[1]. The television was better, the comedy was funnier, the chocolate was tastier. Continue reading

The strange concurrence of small feet in some of my favourite novels and one I don’t like


I recently encountered Ian McEwan for the first time, in the form of an audiobook of The Children Act lent to me by my mother and very sternly read by a woman called Lindsay Duncan, CBE.

It’s relentlessly depressing so far. But some light relief came from an unexpected quarter: McEwan’s descriptions of people. Continue reading

Swedish humour, as demonstrated by Björn Ulvaeus in ‘The Winner Takes It All’

A few years ago, for some reason, and I honestly can’t imagine what that reason could have been, I watched a documentary called ABBA, The Best Pop Group Ever – THE STORY, which you can see here. But I’m kind of glad I did, because the story of the circumstances surrounding the making of ‘The Winner Takes It All’ was totally nuts, and I’ve never forgotten it.

You may remember, that’s the video when this

turns into this

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Granny panties: a new low

Cookie Thumper granny panties

Hairstyle aside, a naked Yo-Landi Vi$$er would surely be a 10, by the standards set in ‘today’s media’, mostly because of her boobs, for which a new word – one step up from ‘perky’ – should be coined.

But when she’s not naked, she’s frequently kitted out like a Ringwraith, wearing solid black contact lenses that stir our primal fears, noshing human hearts and being really, really onbeskof.  Continue reading