High life

Why Roy Cohn is not one of the world’s most evil men

New York   The Roy Cohn documentary Bully. Coward. Victim: the Story of Roy Cohn was successfully screened at the Lincoln Center last week to a full house. Cohn was once Donald Trump’s lawyer, and after the screening the event turned into an anti-Trump show. Had I known this would happen, I would have stayed

Low life

What had the chambermaid made of my penis vacuum pump?

Fumbling outside my door in dripping swimming trunks for my room key, I was hailed cheerily by the maid from a doorway further along the corridor. I hadn’t met her, but her greeting was not without a touch of familiarity, if not intimacy, I thought. The latter, I guessed, must be predicated on the fact

Real life

My bid to boost my carbon footprint

Inspired by Harry and Meghan I decided to get on a plane. I hadn’t been anywhere for so long it was becoming ridiculous, and neither had my other half. No kids, no trips, no new cars… ‘If my carbon footprint gets any lower I’m going to have to eat coal,’ the builder boyfriend said, putting

More from life

The dark world of Victorian horse racing

Two hours after showing her father, the Marquess of Anglesey, the wedding dress in which she was to marry the country squire Henry Chaplin, Lady Florence Paget took a carriage to Marshall & Snelgrove’s department store. Leaving by a side entrance, she was escorted to St George’s Church in Hanover Square where she married Harry

No sacred cows

You have to laugh at Extinction Rebellion

I ventured out into Westminster earlier this week to take a look at the Extinction Rebellion protest and it reminded me of the Edinburgh Fringe. I don’t just mean the sheer number of people in fancy dress, such as the Red Rebels with their red robes and white face paint, or the men in gas

Dear Mary

Dear Mary: How can I tell a man at yoga class to cover up?

Q. My sister runs a yoga school and a middle-aged gentleman has joined. Although she is delighted to encourage male membership in a very female-dominated session, his male membership tends to make appearances throughout the lesson due to the looseness of the shorts he wears. In her position at the front teaching, my sister is


Mind your language

What’s the word for a word that’s been used only once?

It is easy to speak a sentence never spoken before since the world came fresh from its mould. It’s not so easy to say a word unsaid by any other lips. In its second edition (1989) the Oxford English Dictionary recorded numbskullism with a single illustrative quotation, from Anne Seward, a younger contemporary of Samuel

The Wiki Man

Why averages don’t add up

I recently learned from a doctor friend that salt isn’t necessarily bad for you. Yes, there is a minority whose blood pressure isdriven haywire by eating the stuff, but most people can consume it without much risk. The reason we are formally advised to avoid salt is that lowering salt consumption improves public health on