Mind the gap: how wide is the North-South divide?

Red light, green light The three tiers of Covid restrictions have been described as a ‘traffic light’ system. — The world’s first traffic light is recorded as having been installed at the Palace of Westminster in 1868 to help MPs and peers enter and leave parliament. Those lights only had red and green phases.— Traffic lights installed in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1914 incorporated a buzzer to warn that the lights were about to change. The amber phase was patented by Garrett Augustus Morgan, an African-American inventor, after witnessing an accident. Watford Gap? New lockdown measures have rekindled talk of a north/south divide. Has the gap widened or shrunk over the

How to be content

The Covid-19 pandemic is apparently causing a large number of mental health problems. On that subject, one could do a lot worse than read the Roman poet Horace (65-8 BC). An attractive feature of Horace’s views about man’s efforts (including his own) to enjoy the good life is that you have to laugh about it all. He reflects that everyone thinks others better off than they are and envies their good fortune, but if a god told them to swap jobs, they would all refuse, thus (apparently) giving up their chance to be happy. And what would Zeus think of that — no more answers to your prayers! ‘Harvest the