Barack Obama: Yes We Know

Is anyone on the planet still unaware that Barack Obama is black? Thought not. Then why do journalists keep repeating the fact? I don’t remember them constantly saying “Colin Powell, first African American Secretary of State”, or for that matter, “Condoleezza Rice, first Secretary of State with two z’s in her name”.

Yes it’s historic, but Barack Obama has many other qualities. I think we should move on now.


When we moved into this house, a late Victorian semi, we had the fireplace in the living room opened up and the chimney swept. During the winter months one of the few consolations when it is dark and cold outside is to be able to light a real ‘living’ fire and sit mesmerised in its glow.

The builder who did the work at the time couldn’t fully understand the attraction. He had probably ‘modernised’ many houses by ripping out fireplaces. ‘You can always put in a gas coal-effect fire later’ he reassured us, assuming that we would soon grow tired of the work and mess involved with a real fire. Continue reading


I bought a netbook recently, an Asus Eee PC 900 running Linux. It’s got no hard drive and no Windows software, yet right out of the box you can surf the web and do everything that normally requires Microsoft Office – plus a few things besides.

I took it to Spain and watched a movie on it during the flight (saved to an SD card). I sat in a cafe wirelessly checking my emails. I can also listen to internet radio from around the world and use Skype with the built in webcam. All this from a device which is about the size of an A5 sheet of paper.

I was delighted with it until Continue reading