Archive for December, 2018

Why it’s fun to be in one’s 60s or 70s in today’s Britain

December 29th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Since I was 70 this year, I’ve had to change the title of my light-hearted look at some of the advantages of being a pensioner in Britain. Check it out here.

Posted in British current affairs, History, My life & thoughts | Comments (0)

Binge-watching the television adaptation of “My Brilliant Friend”

December 28th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Two years ago, it took me almost three months, but I completed my summer/autumn reading project: to read the four works and 1700 pages that make up the ‘Neapolitan Novels’, an acclaimed series by the Italian author Elena Ferrante. This is a saga of the 60-year friendship between two girls from a poor neighbourhood of Naples […]

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“Listening at Christmas – and always” by Roger Darlington

December 24th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

A few years after I left my secondary school in Manchester, I was invited to help out with the school’s Christmas Fair and I decided to have a go at being Father Christmas. I had recently grown my first full beard and thought that I would enter into the role by rubbing flour into my […]

Posted in My life & thoughts | Comments (0)

How Jeremy became Paddy

December 24th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Why was th deceased Liberal Party leader Paddy Asshdiwn called Paddy rather than Jeremy like the current Labour Party leader? This explanation is taken from the “Guardian” obituary: John Ashdown, an Ulster Protestant who was an Indian army captain and his Ulster Catholic wife, Lois (nee Hudson), who had been an army nurse. The family […]

Posted in British current affairs | Comments (0)

My review of the award-winning film “Shoplifters”

December 24th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Winner of the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival, this wonderful Japanese work was written, directed and edited by Hirokazu Kore-eda. Set in Toyko, it presents a vision of Japanese society that we rarely see: a disparate group living in real poverty and surviving through a mixture of irregular and insecure work, benefit fraud […]

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A review of the new super-hero movie “Aquaman”

December 23rd, 2018 by Roger Darlington

After two brief previous appearances in earlier movies in the DC Extended Universe, Aquaman (aka Arthur Curry) – played by Hawaii-born Jason Momou who has real physical presence – now has his own feature film in the form of the traditional origin story for super-heroes. The unusual environment of the undersea world of Atlanta provides […]

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A review of “This Book Will Blow Your Mind”

December 22nd, 2018 by Roger Darlington

The title certainly grabs the attention. The subtitle – “Journeys to the extremes of science” – is more explanatory of what to expect. However, while science books generally tell us what we know about a particular branch of science, this work suggests that much of what we think we know may be incomplete or even […]

Posted in Science & technology | Comments (0)

All the president’s men and women who have left the service of Donald J Trump

December 21st, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Jim Mattis, US Defence Secretary, has announced his resignation over the president’s premature withdrawal of US troops from Syria. is incredible – and very damaging to public policy – how many key officials in the Trump administration have resigned or been fired in the space of just two years. But, of course, it tells us […]

Posted in American current affairs | Comments (0)

Defending the UK contribution of 0.7% of GDP on international aid

December 20th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

This is a speech which my son Richard made very recently at a conference in Oslo on international aid. You will understand why I am super proud of him and the work he is doing.

Posted in British current affairs, World current affairs | Comments (0)

The welcome return of the American television series “Madam Secretary”

December 18th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

I’m a bit of a political junkie and I love political dramas in the movies or on television. “The West Wing” was my all-time favourite TV series – I watched all 155 episodes as they were broadcast and every episode again when it was out in a box set. So, ever since it began on British television, […]

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