Quote Of The Day

"Victory goes to the player who makes the next-to-last mistake - Chessmaster Savielly Grigorievitch Tartakower (1887-1956)"

Thursday, August 31, 2023


I finally got round to seeing Oppenheimer - at the Vue in London’s glitzy Angel. 

Christopher Nolan deserves every gilt-edged adjective for his brilliant take on J. Robert Oppenheimer (a flawless Cillian Murphy), the dark knight of the atomic age. It was beautiful, terrifying, transfixing, stunning, and (let’s not forget) long. 

Yes, it is as epic in length as it is epic in its achievement. It will explode into screen history. 

Oscars surely beckon. 

🎥 👏 👏

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Guests from Oz…

Fab having David and Andrew from Oz staying with us for the week. 

They even asked, actually asked, to see the Emirates Stadium and Wenger statue. ❤️

Monday, August 28, 2023

Trinity Reunion…

I left Trinity College, Cambridge 39 years ago. And have met up with few of my fellow college since then. Life, and few broken hearts, got in the way. 

Happily Sarah corrected this gross omission on my part by arranging a Cambridge Friends Late Summer lunch at her place in Winchester. 

All the old gang were there; Sarah, John, Stuart, Bernard, Caroline, Matt, Dave, and Helen. Plus everyone’s partners. 

Great food, great company, loads (and loads) to catch up on. 

I helped jog a few rusty memories with a few hundred photos I’d recently had digitised too. 

We laughed. A lot. 

It was utterly delightful and utterly overwhelming. I was quite overcome. 

As we walked away five hours later to get our train back to London I had to hold back the tears. 

Thank you Sarah. @foxworld 

Friday, August 25, 2023

Next to Normal @ Donmar Warehouse...

A rock musical about mental illness? Well, we weren't quite sure what we were letting ourselves in for as we took our seats last night at the Donmar Warehouse in London's glitzy West End - but we needn't have worried. It was corker. Great songs, a powerful story, big twists and courage, wit and empathy aplenty.
The setting starts with a suburban family's daily routine but soon expands the very scope of subject matter for musicals.
In this new production (and it's had a long and successful life on Broadway) directed by Michael Longhurst, we see Caissie Levy play the lead role of the mother Diana Goodman. Jamie Parker plays her husband Dan. And their children Gabe and Natalie are played by Jack Wolfe and Eleanor Worthington Cox. 
The singing is all top notch and the live five-piece band who hover above the action are excellent. 
I won't give any of the plot away but there are plenty of trigger warnings before you go in; someone fainted towards the end of the first act and had to be removed, and Stuart had lots of comments about how realistic some of the medical procedures were!
If you like your musicals to be different, challenging, full of life, funny and very rewarding - this is the show for you.


Thursday, August 24, 2023

Supper with Famalam…

Thank you Dawn for treating us all to supper last night. It’s been a pleasure having Angus to stay this week. 

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Fun in the park with my niece Charlotte and grandnephew Manning…

How to earn the love of a grandnephew. Bribery. Bringing up kids is easier than I thought. You just buy them stuff. 😂

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Crystal Palace 0 - 1 Arsenal

Well, that was a stressful Monday night game. At least we won. The ref showered us with yellow cards and Palace seemed to get just one. Oh well, a win’s a win.
@arsenal @gaygooners #awaygames

Monday, August 21, 2023

Famalam Bar Crawl…

Fun day out with some of the famalam around glitzy Islington hostelries.  Simon, Karen, Angus, Stu & me. 
Taking my ‘Ted Lasso’ out for a test run 🥸 😂

Friday, August 18, 2023

A Mirror @ Almeida Theatre…

"This performance is being staged without a licence from the Ministry. We recognise the risk that each and every one of you is taking by attending, and we salute your courage."
Last night, Stuart and I went to see the world premiere of Sam Holcroft's new play A Mirror at the Almeida Theatre in London glitzy Islington.
And what an amazing play it is. Well I say 'play', it’s a play within a play within a play. Or is it?
The action starts with a wedding in a police state. Eyes and ears are everywhere. We, the audience, are complicit.
But soon everything is turned on its head and is everything we are seeing what we think we’re seeing?
Indeed, there are loads of twists and turns throughout the non-stop two-hour running time. But that time just flew by.
It was funny, clever, sexy, thought-provoking, and a lot of fun. 
The issues of censorship, artistic expression, authorship, free-speech and suspension of disbelief were all delightfully explored.
Directed by Jeremy Herrin, the three stars are Jonny Lee Miller (him off of Trainspotting), Tanya Reynolds (her off of Sex Education) and Micheal Ward (him off of Top Boy).
Only on for a month, but if you can get a ticket. Go.


Thursday, August 17, 2023

The State Apartments of the Speaker's House…

Earlier today Stuart and I went on a tour of The State Apartments of the Speaker's House at the Houses of Parliament in London glitzy Westminster.   

Lots of bling, lots of history, and some magnificent artworks on display including a unique set of 46 portraits of Speakers through the years, it was a tour worth doing. 

The role of the Speaker has existed since at least 1377 and has a long history of evolving responsibilities and traditions. The Speaker’s role today is to chair debates in the House of Commons Chamber, but he also represents the House of Commons on a national and international level.  

No cameras were allowed inside the house (haha, as if that would stop me) - there were lots of impressive rooms; the Grand Staircase, the Speakers Study, the Crimson Drawing Room, the State Dining Room, and the State Bedroom.  

Back in Westminster Hall the Speaker’s big old golden State Coach was as on display too. Nice. 

Worth the £20 entrance fee.