1. Give every new born baby a feather, to learn how to laugh through ticklishness.
  2. Give every new born a flower, made from recycled arms (weapons that is, not human limbs).
  3. Recycle nappies into the building trade as insulation, playground rubber and flood barriers.
  4. Turn the city of London into an eco-naturist retreat at weekends.
  5. Persuade the NHS to give a Good Luck inoculation at the onset of winter each year to counteract Seasonal Adjustment Disorder.
  6. Start the wold family tree jigsaw as a permanent growing piece of art, with every new born baby sprouting as a leaf from one big tree, so big it can be seen from space like the Nazca Lines, and if that feels like too much hard word, just do it online.
  7. Create the opposite of a cemetery, a happy place, bereft of religion, where you can visit that commemorates birth with plaques, eulogies, ambitions. Grandparents and godparents can buy a plot of land as a birthing present. Call it a BIRTHMEADOW, buy a field, patent the name, but cut me in on the deal please.


You’re 3 and you want like hell to be 4. You’re in you early 40’s and you overcompensate with the hair dye to look 30-something. You’re 70 odd and you want your loved one to pull the plug out of your life support unit, but they can’t or they’ll go down for murder. What is it with our obsession of being uncomfortable with the age we are?

As Channel 4 hits 30 it wonders how it should behave given its licence to be different. Where has all the anger and anarchy gone? Well, you have to look at the people running the channel. They’re not all John Peel. They can’t retain that youthful ear and eye for provocation over 3 decades. Some of them have been through parenthood and softened, taking a ticket to cosy up at Five. Some graduated into film and stop fretting about eyeballs. Others diversified into the digital realm realising that telly is like the incontinent uncle who pops over for Xmas dinner. Hands up, I still warm to C4 news as Jon Snow shows that you can keep going if your content doesn’t need edge forced into it. He does trip up his words way more than he used to though. Has anyone else noticed how he fights with the simplest lines on autocue – maybe he needs beefier lenses?

We could all do worse than look at 104 year young Oscar Niemeyer, the Brazilian God of Curved Architecture.

He’s just spent a fortnight in hospital for dehydration. They say he wanted to get back to his desk and get on with some work. He also had some Converse trainers to launch, the same shoes that my 3 year old wears.

He’s not a child but he’s behaving wonderfully like one.

God bless his bones and the fluid that keeps tickling them.


Great Britain is back on the gold medal plinth and we’re living up to our name again. Monocle magazine has just voted us the world champions when it comes to soft power.

As the title suggests, it’s not down to military might and governmental machismo. We have Adele, Bradley Wiggins and Mulberry handbags to thank for our gong. Oh, and Bond. And Danny Boyle’s Olympic opening. And a GCSE art class from Halifax. It seems they tot up just about everything except GDP. Which makes you think where the world might be if GDP was abolished as a barometer of growth and we measured progress in ways more suited to the things that make us human. Is it just because culture is difficult to measure that they don’t even try? C’mon you maverick economists. Tell us a new joke and make us laugh deep down inside until it starts to heal the ‘Fiscal Cliff’ gag you’ve been pushing us towards for the past month.

Sorry. Anger has a habit of not knocking before it starts knocking ten bells of shit out of someone or something you suddenly face yourself in an argument with.

Must stay calm, must be soft. Like my native land.

Now, where’s my Mogadon.


Dear Micro-Congress of America – you know who you are
It’s a big old day in the US of A.
If people wake up and get out of the left side of bed, you’ll all sleep happier tonight.
If not, send us a postcard from Bolivia.
We wish you well.
The Rest of the World


Miliband & Miliband. We felt it coming. Ed & David couldn’t keep their brains off each other. But two heads with one heart are better than many with none. History tells us that brotherhoods last. They transcend politics, confound religion and destroy sporting barriers, as the Brownlee Brothers can testify.

So will age define decision, in private if not in public? Will telepathy accelerate policy and solidify trust? Will tiffs flush out the absolute truth and haul a team into European contention?

If you have a brother, ask him.

If not, ask your sister.

If you’re an only child, look hard in the mirror and put a gun to your alter ego.