Having moved house recently, I have had to find a new gym to frequent. It has been something of a shock to go from the spacious environs of Virgin Active to the slightly less salubrious quarters of the Fitness First situated under the gap between platforms 17 and 18 of Liverpool Street station. One receives similar looks from overburdened commuters of a morning disappearing down into this subterranean netherworld as those seeking out the intra-mural platform for the Hogwarts express.

One of the compensatory features of my new venue is that lots of the exercise machines have their own TV screens. I was very impressed with this at first, as it allows you to control what you watch (since Midsomer Murders is never the most inspirational programming to be cycling along to), and allows people with rubbish eye sight like me to watch the TV without straining and looking like a puffed-out mole on a hamster wheel.



CricketSo we’ve regained the Ashes and that’s all well and good, but do we have the intangible ‘aura’ that Strauss claims the Aussies have lost? And have they actually lost it? I’m not so sure.

Have a look at the two sides and, well, there really is no comparison. Take the swarthy, gum-chewing Brad Haddin for example, caked in sunscreen and constantly chirping away at our hapless batsmen. Compare him to his opposite number, Matt Prior, a man apparently ageing Benjamin Button-style, who looks about as intimidating as, err…Graham Swann. They have Mike Hussey, we have Paul Collingwood; they have Peter Siddle, we have Stewart Broad. You get where I’m going with this.

And then there’s Ricky Ponting, a man who looks like I would imagine a convict looking like if I’d never seen a convict before, which, come to think of it, I haven’t. He has a cool weather-beaten cap and a permanent 5 o’clock shadow. In other words, he looks like a bad boy. Compare him with our leader and figurehead Strauss, with his high-pitched voice and gaylord wedding ring necklace. Who looks more like winning a game of cricket?


As a rugby union fan and noted Harlequins supporter Jet frequently feels shame. Usually when someone asks me what football team I support and I reluctantly have to confess that I’m more of a Quins man. A lot of people don’t realise that Harlequins is a club so awesome that Bob Dylan wrote a song about us. Which I can quote you directly: “come all without, come all within, you’ll not see nothing like the Mighty Quin(n)”s.

Quins are so awesome in fact that we got to the quarter finals of the European Cup last year. And only lost by a point. Which is pretty hard to believe when you realise that Dean Richards, our coach, is a criminal mastermind so genius that he thought of a wheeze too blatant for anybody ever to suspect. (more…)

I wonder how how much of Sarah Palin’s appeal allure is based on how utterly inexplicable she and her beliefs are. But maybe that’s just her way of splitting the Cheechakos from the Sourdough.

At all events, she is somewhat alluring, and nowhere more so than in this picture I found on the wonderful Andrew Sullivan’s blog. It almost makes you forget what she’s banging on about, namely that Obama wants to kill babies or some such.

Amusingly, an Irish girl a couple of years ahead of Dr C at university was taught at school that Protestants eat babies.

Anyway, the search for hot women in government continues. We are much the poorer for Caroline Flint’s departure. And you’d think that Kitty Ussher would be a bit of hottie with a name like that. You’d be wrong.

Bryony Gordon is awesome. Not just because she has big boobs, but also because she writes about them a lot. Her latest column is charming as ever, with the following terrific pun:

Cast your minds back a few months, and you will remember the storm in a double D cup that was created when it was discovered that Marks & Spencer was charging women with larger breasts a couple of quid extra for bras. It was all over the papers. [My emphasis]

Doctor Cranium’s friend at the Evening Standard claims that she broke that story. Another friend who used to work at the Daily Telegraph told Dr C that La Gordon likes to dress in such a way as to highlight her decolletage. I say more power to them her.

Meanwhile there have been worrying developments in the Premier League close season.

The fragile truce between Manchester United and Chelsea enshrined in the 2005 “Mikel Accords”, whereby Chelsea were limited to an equivalent of 3 Ballacks to every 5 of United Rooneys, looks to have crumbled, leading to a headlong arms race.

Like a demented Wilkinson Sword and Gillette adding more and more pointless extra blades, Chelsea and United have been acquiring offensive weapons with reckless abandon. Word has reached this reporter that United plan to play 10 strikers next term, with Christiano Ronaldo as a rush goalie. (more…)

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