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This England: The Newsreel! November 23rd 2018

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On This Day: “A little nonsense now and then, is cherished by the wisest men”.

Roald Dahl – taken from Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, who died on this day, 1990

Meghan weighs in on Christmas

Of all the unusual traditions that the Royal Family is known for, a new one has come to light that Meghan may find a bit heavy-going this Christmas.

Apparently guests are weighed before and after the Christmas feast at Sandringham House, ostensibly to prove what a generous meal they have just enjoyed – but perhaps really to ensure they haven’t run off with the family silver? Fingers crossed Meghan takes kindly to this idea as we’re fairly sure it’s the first time she will have encountered this tradition.

 

It could only happen in England

We’re told never to give up on our dreams and DJ, Deke Duncan, has finally realised his ‘ultimate ambition’ at the age of 73. After 44 years of broadcasting to an audience of just one – his wife, Theresa – from their garden shed, Mr Duncan has finally been invited to present his own one-hour special over Christmas on BBC Three Counties radio.

Of course an audience of just one was no without it’s difficulties – if Mrs Duncan needed to ‘pop to the shops’ that would leave no one actually listening – but on the whole Radio 77 lasted out due to Mr Duncan’s passion which was borne out of listening to pirate Radio Stations such as Radio Caroline and Radio London, both of which operated illegally from ships off the Essex coast in the 1960s.

 

Let’s not sugar-coat the issue

Of all the outcomes of a no-deal Brexit, strangely the one to generate the most headlines this week was the news that failure to sign on the dotted line could result in the country running out of Mars Bars in a matter of weeks.

Apparently two of the ingredients used to make the chocolate bar are imported and only take a few days to go off, so should food imports be barred from entering the UK via the port of Dover, the chocolate bar will cease to be made. 

Surely Mars Bars aren’t the only foodstuff to be affected? What about tomatoes and mandarins, pasta and paella rice? Listening to the Food and Drink Federation who informed Michael Gove of this singular confectionary crisis at a roundtable meeting, Mars Bars matter most. And if Gove agrees? Perhaps it’s evidence of what we thought all along - he really is from another planet.

 

Losing one’s head

Immature behaviour rocked the world of football, when referee David McNamara was suspended by the FA for forgetting his coin for the pre-match coin toss and then getting the two captains to play rock, paper, scissors. ‘It was a moment of madness’ and ‘it’s not defendable’ said Joanna Stimpston, FA women’s refereeing manager, who was very damning of the decision. Refereeing – it’s anything but child’s play.

 

Pizza tears us apart

It seems the president of Iceland, Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, fell into a crisis of conscience this week over a comment made two years ago regarding his wish to ban putting pineapple on pizza.

‘That’s where the influence of this office sort of… got the better of me’, he admitted to Canadian TV show As It Happens, ‘I went a step too far’. Jóhannesson later made a statement (perhaps in an attempt to put the issue to bed once and for all): ‘I like pineapples, just not on pizza. I do not have the power to make laws which forbid people to put pineapples on their pizza. I am glad that I do not hold such power. Presidents should not have unlimited power. I would not want to hold this position if I could pass laws forbidding that which I don’t like. I would not want to live in such a country’.  

Who knew pineapples and pizza could elicit such an emotional response? Still, according to a poll by YouGov on Twitter, 42% of us in the UK like pineapple as a pizza topping – this could be a divisive as Brexit.

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