Watching the English

If you haven’t already, pick up a copy of Watching the English from your nearest bookshop. It’s an attempt by a professional (English) anthropologist, Kate Fox, to analyse the English and English behaviour.
While it’s a bit repetitive, she does manage to make explicit most of the implicit rules of social behaviour in English society. This is sometimes amusing, mostly enlightening and occasionally irritating, mainly when she highlights things you’ve already noticed. It is well worth a read, particularly if you’re English and think that some of your behaviour is “natural” and the “way everyone is”. Is should also help foreigners avoid making various faux pas and help English readers be more tolerant of those that do.

The Ace of Wine

Pandora at The Independent has revealed the delightful news that Lemmy from Motorhead wants to cameo in Last of the Summer Wine.

“For some reason, we got talking about TV, and Lemmy said that the only thing worth watching these days was Last of the Summer Wine,” I’m told. “He watches it every time he can, and has asked for a cameo as a chum of a character called Clegg.”

As cameos go, that’s up there with the entire series of Extras and Elisabeth Sladen in the next series of Doctor Who. I might actually watch BBC1 for once if Jim fixes it for Lemmy.

Jon Stewart vs Christopher Hitchens

Not sure I totally agree with this analysis of the slight debate between Jon Stewart and Christopher Hitchens over on The Daily Show about the war in Iraq. Big fan that I am of Christopher Hitchens, I must point out that Hitchens didn’t really get a chance to defend himself. He was, after all, being asked to debate the war in the Iraq in the short time he had been allotted to promote a book on Thomas Jefferson.
Stewart did, however, show that he is at least the smartest interviewer on American TV outside of PBS, however. And Hitchens did at least provide nuance that doesn’t appear to show itself in his arguments over in Fighting Talk.