High life

Menace and danger

New York A letter to the mother of my children from the greatest living French writer, Michel Déon, one of the 40 immortals of the French Academy, shows me to be a philistine. Michel kindly points out that Mozart’s Don Juan was inspired by a Molière play, not by a Beaumarchais one, as I wrote

Low life


I’ve gone round to Sharon’s and walked into a stand-up row between Sharon and her brother in their kitchen. They’re yelling at each other and the dog’s going barmy. She’s a slut and he’s a dick is the argument in a nutshell. The phone rings. I make myself useful and answer it. It’s Trevor, Sharon’s

More from life

Restaurants | 26 November 2005

It’s a Sunday and as our son doesn’t have any sporting engagements for the first time in 657 years my partner proposes a Family Day Out, a simple enough phrase always promoted in newspapers — The Best Family Days Out; Great Days Out For The Family — but one which always strikes terror in my

Lyricist of the links

A confrère faced a daunting task last week. As golfing correspondent of the Times, it fell to John Hopkins to do the honours with the speech of acclaim at the induction into the World Golf Hall of Fame in Florida of his fabled predecessor Bernard Darwin (1876–1961), whom many consider the father of sportswriting. In

Your Problems Solved | 26 November 2005

Q. I was rather hurt yesterday when I delivered my 80-year-old mother to the Carlton Club at 3 p.m. to meet her friends and have tea and the porter would not allow me in. ‘Madam, are you wearing jeans!’ Too true — Armani jeans, Jermyn Street shirt, Burberry mac, flat ankle-length leather boots and small

Family fortunes

Down in his canal field on a damp November morning, Paul Webber’s horses were working in threes, hooves thudding into the resilient turf. This time it was Gift Voucher, Off Spin and Star Shot. ‘It’s such a lovely sound, horses galloping on good ground;’ declared the trainer, adding, ‘they can look good on the all-weather,