The Spectator

24 November 2018

May’s toxic legacy

The PM will leave the Tory party more divided over Europe than ever


High life

An extraordinary encounter in a New York taxi

New York   If I wrote this in one of those newspaper diaries about metropolitan life, no one would believe…

Low life

It was carnage in our French cave

So many beautiful mice, some mere pups, were starving to death behind ecologically approved cement

Real life

How to destroy a house from the ground up

The builder boyfriend was the architect of my home’s destruction, but can Stefano stop the rot?

The turf

My hot tips for the coming season

Last time round, our Twelve to Follow generated a healthy profit, so dig deep



DO NOT DOUBLE PARTSCORES WHEN PLAYING TEAMS. Here is Geir Helgemo somehow fooling his expert opponents into defending like total…

Spectator Wine

Wine Club 24 November

I take something of a head-in-the-sand approach to Christmas. Despite the bloody supermarkets and high-street stores trumpeting the forthcoming festivities…


Dante’s millions

As I write, the London world championship is tied at 3½-3½, after seven games. In striving to move ahead, the…

Chess puzzle

no. 533

White to play. This is a variation from Caruana-Carlsen, World Championship, London 2018. White has sacrificed a piece in order…


Trumpian verse

In Competition No. 3075 you were invited to submit poems by Donald Trump.  The Beautiful Poetry of Donald Trump, which…


2386: Outside what we know

Three unclued lights featured the remaining ones, two of two words, the others paired. Two of them do double duty.…

Crossword solution

to 2383: Flagged

The unclued lights are presenters of BLUE PETER: individually at 39; pairs are 3/2, 7/22, 15A/15D, 15A/17, 25/14, and 32/31,…

No sacred cows

My wife has gone back to work – and I’ve turned into a SADDO

When I proposed to Caroline back in 2000, she was a trainee solicitor and I was a freelance journalist. In…

The Wiki Man

Trump may have a point about fake news

In recent years, much scrutiny has been paid to the workings of social media algorithms. Driven by escalating competition for…

Dear Mary

Dear Mary: How can I turn my arrogant son into a snowflake?

Q. I am organising my 30th birthday party weekend at a large country house kindly lent to me by friends…


The paradox of Burgundy

I was trying to remember what I once knew about the theology of the Reformation and especially the various factions’…

Mind your language

Word of the week: ‘cakeism’

Latest despatches from the Dictionary Wars bring news of Oxford’s words of the year, a counterblast to last week’s words…

The Best of Coffee House

Jeremy Corbyn is as deluded about Brexit as Jacob Rees-Mogg

Now that the coup of the plastic spoons appears to have failed – Jacob Rees-Mogg and his accomplices could not…

The Best of Coffee House

The top 40 horrors lurking in the small print of Theresa May’s Brexit deal

This week, Theresa May’s government teetered on the point of collapse over her proposed Brexit deal. The withdrawal agreement between…

The Best of Coffee House

Has Mark Carney just ended the campaign for a ‘People’s Vote’?

The headlines will inevitably write themselves. The Bank of England backs Theresa May. The Prime Minister’s beleaguered and precarious deal…