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A Year On

Five pandemic mistakes we keep repeating.

The best and worst places to be in the pandemic. How your country compares.

How Iceland hammered Covid with science. The world’s unlikeliest pandemic success story.

The hunt for Europe’s earliest, crucial Covid-19 deaths.

The pandemic heroes who gave us the gifts of time and information.

Britain’s outbreak through the eyes of a New Zealand nurse.

Michael Rosen on what it feels like to nearly die.

Their noses paid the bills. Then Covid took their sense of smell.

I used to be a stand-up comedian.

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17 March 2021

Dog on the Road

America’s stupid coup.

The Donald J. Trump Presidential Library.

What’s going on with the stock market?

Yanis Varoufakis: “We live under something far worse than capitalism.”

Brexit leaves British families unable to return.

My three visa rejections.

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3 December 2020

Back of the Net

How the coronavirus spreads through the air.

Michael Rosen’s covid coma.

A new level of parental anxiety.

Cloud loss could push the climate past a tipping point.

Dark fluid could dominate the universe.

Drinking dark fluid before breakfast is bad for you.

The oral history of Alan Partridge.

I see a little silhouetto of a chicken.

Twisted graphene.

Car design is about to change forever.

China’s war on Uighur culture.

The face of America.

The turbulent Twenties.

31 October 2020

Rare and Beautiful Apples

A new enzyme eats plastic bottles.

Werner Herzog on Bruce Chatwin.

Matt Berry, fellow Oldfield fan.

The world’s most famous shipwreck.

Britain’s coming Brexit humbling. Ireland will pay the price.

“It’s like an open prison.”

What to do when the future feels hopeless.

Stop being a people pleaser.

Stop putting things off.

Break bad habits.

Abandon originality.

The emotions you never knew you had.

Rare and beautiful apples.

3 October 2020

Muddy Knees

Sight-seeing on Flight Simulator.

Restoring a ratchet screwdriver from 1891.

The best insults you’ve ever heard.

Window swap.

The origin of mud.

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6 September 2020 · 1 Comment

Green Sand

There’s growing evidence that Covid-19 is airborne.

Serious brain disorders are developing in people with mild coronavirus symptoms.

It’s not enough to not die.

How well do masks work?

Parenting in the Covid-19 economy.

Those “all over the place” feelings are symptoms of stress. Here’s what’s happening.

Thucydides in times of trouble.

When lies and incompetence collide.

A Caribbean beach could help us slow climate change.

Crocodiles aren’t “living fossils” (via Mefi).

The Hamilton Polka.

15 July 2020

The Madness

How the virus conquered America.

Brazil faces the worst-case scenario.

Europe’s post-lockdown rules. Telling detail: the UK has had by far the longest lockdown.

Britain has gone completely mad during lockdown.

More madness: We can’t fight covid and Brexit at the same time. But as of midnight last night, we’ll have to.

The UK government’s coronavirus testing statistics are missing most of the current new cases.

Our kids have turned 9 and 13 during lockdown and have been trying to keep up with schoolwork on Microsoft Teams day after day after day, and this short film about lockdown life by Canadian teenager Liv McNeil felt so true that it reduced me to tears.

Les poules rentrent à la maison pour se percher.

You can’t understand the world without learning about empire.

A letter to a granddaughter about Earth’s history.

Ukulele Batman meets his match. Aw, come on!

1 July 2020

Light Relief

Villanelle as muppets. David Tennant as thermos flasks.

Neil Finn’s lockdown podcast.

Papercraft models of vintage PCs. I’m having a go at making the 128k Mac, the first I ever used.

23 June 2020

Rebel Botanists

Good Omens: Lockdown.

Star Wars: The Original Radio Drama.

N.K. Jemisin interviewed.

Tom Hardy’s bedtime stories.

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17 May 2020

Fermented Breakfast

More grouse recipes from Nat’s What I Reckon: Wham Bam Thank You Lamb, Chili Con Can’t Go Outside and Eggs-istential Crisis. Recipes do not involve actual grouse.

Cooking food on the Internet for fun and profit.

The stay-at-home bread boom.

Duck eats yeast; man loses eye. It checks out.

Big Butter and Big Cheese have taken over France.

17 May 2020 · 1 Comment