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13 September

In the headlines

Thousands of people queued through the night in Edinburgh to pay their final respects to the Queen, ahead of her coffin being taken to London this evening. The government has warned that queuing times for her lying-in-state at Westminster Hall will range from 17 to 35 hours. Ukraine has retaken 6,000 sq km of occupied territory from Russia since the beginning of September, President Zelensky has claimed – double the weekend’s estimate. According to officials in Kyiv, more than 20 towns and villages have been recaptured in the last day alone. The soaring cost of fuel, fertiliser and feed is forcing British farmers to rear 20% fewer pigs than usual, says The Sun, “putting fry-ups and pigs in blankets under threat”. It’s a “cost trough living crisis”.

Gone viral

When MSNBC anchor Ali Velshi told viewers on Saturday that the Queen represented an institution with a “long and ugly history of brutal colonialism, violence, theft and slavery”, British historian Andrew Roberts was on hand to correct him. “If we had given so much pain to people throughout history,” said Roberts, “why was Prince Charles chosen by every single Commonwealth country – many of which are former imperial countries?” “Are you really taking issue with the horrors of colonialism?” asked a stunned Velshi. “I’m certainly taking issue with your remarks about slavery,” replied Roberts, “which we abolished 32 years before you did.” Only, he added, “we didn’t have to kill 600,000 people in a civil war over it”. Watch the full clip here.

On the money

“Holding on to an ex’s stuff may prove profitable later on,” says CNN, as Elon Musk’s college girlfriend is finding out. Jennifer Gwynne, who dated him back in 1994, has started auctioning off mementos from the couple’s time together. The lot includes 18 “candid photos” of the billionaire as a baby-faced student at the University of Pennsylvania. A note reading “Happy birthday, Jennifer (aka, Boo-Boo), Love, Elon” has already fetched a bid of $10,001. Musk fans can put their offers in here.

Inside politics

French officials don’t think much of Liz Truss’s aspiration to be like Margaret Thatcher, says Bloomberg. Rather than seeing her as another “Iron Lady”, they have dubbed the notoriously U-turn-prone politician the “iron weather vane”.



The Queen used “secret handbag signals” to communicate with her staff, says Metro. If a conversation was going on a bit, and she wanted someone to come over and interrupt, she would subtly swap her bag over from one hand to the other. If she’d tired of a dinner, and wanted it wrapped up in the next five minutes, her bag would be placed on the table. If she was really having a dreadful time and wanted to be extracted immediately? The bag would go on the floor.


With the cost of the paper used in books rising by 70% over the past year, publishers are taking desperate measures, says The Economist. They’re using “cheaper, lighter paper”; shrinking the amount of white space between characters (and thus the number of pages); and reducing the size of the margins. One benefit is that it is cutting down on waffle. Previously, if a writer submitted 80,000 words rather than 70,000, you wouldn’t worry too much, says Ivan O’Brien, head of The O’Brien Press in Ireland. Now “you might say, ‘Well actually, no’… because otherwise the book is just not going to work”.


It’s a 735-foot-tall moon-shaped resort that Canadian architects are planning to build in Dubai. The $5bn project is expected to be ready by 2027, says luxury magazine Robb Report, and will feature a nightclub, spa and members’ club in the disc-shaped building below the giant glowing orb.


quoted 13-09-2022

“There is no sincerer love than the love of food.”

George Bernard Shaw