John Terry in Wembley trouble –
The Daily Mail reveal that Chelsea player and former England football captain rents out his private box at Wembley stadium for £4,000 , despite the rules prohibiting it. This follows the revelation of Terry’s affair with his team-mate Wayne Bridge’s girlfriend on January 29th 2015. John Terry
Tom Watson expects Tiger to show humility –
Tom Watson has called on Tiger Woods to “show some humility” and apologise for his behaviour before returning to golf. Woods has taken an indefinite break from golf after major speculation surrounding his private life at the end of November 2009 forced him to stop playing. Tom Watson
Trial off, football on –
A New Orleans judge, Michael Bagneris, postpones a trial because he is believes that everybody in the city will be too distracted by New Orleans Saints forthcoming performance in the Super Bowl. It will be the Saints’s first ever Super Bowl appearance on Sunday, when they play the Indianapolis Colts.
Scottish referendum takes place –
Scotland independence referendum takes place with the result looking very uncertain. Tennis player Andy Murray used Twitter to back the Yes vote along with actor Sean Connery. Those backing the No vote and wanting Scotland to remain part of the UK include Sir Paul McCartney, Sting, Mick Jagger, composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, comedian Eddie Izzard, actresses Helena Bonham-Carter and Dame Judi Dench, Simon Cowell, and Stephen Hawking all of whom signed a letter urging Scotland to stay in the union. The result will be known tomorrow. Andy Murray tweet.
Ig Nobel prizes announced –
The annual Ig Nobel prizes awarded by the Annals of Improbable Research have picked out some classic scientific investigations again. Researchers who measured the slipperiness of banana peels, why pork strips appear to stop nosebleeds, and how reindeer react to humans in polar bear suits were among the winners. CLICK TO SEE MORE STUFF FROM THIS DAY…
Wentworth golf club asks for six-figure membership fee –
One of the UK’s most exclusive golf clubs is to start charging £125,000 to new joiners. Wentworth, which was bought by the Beijing-based Reignwood Group in September 2014, has told existing members they must stump up £100,000. Annual fees on top of that are to rise from £8,000 to £16,000. James Wyatt said he and other members faced having to pay “an enormous amount”. The Surrey golf club said membership pricing “is a private club matter”. [BBC]
Working Enigma machine fetches world record price at New York auction –
An extremely rare and fully operational Nazi Enigma machine from Second World War has sold for $365,000 in New York, setting a new record at auction, Bonhams said on Thursday. The M4 machine, which was built between 1943 and 1945, is one of around 150 to have survived from an estimated 1,500 that were built as Nazi Germany fought to fend off the Allies. A spokeswoman for Bonhams said the $365,000 (£237,000) sale price set a new world record for an Enigma machine sold at auction. The purchaser at Wednesday’s sale was identified only as a private collector. [Daily Telegraph]
Rudely-named south-east London coffee shop ordered to remove its sign –
A crudely-named coffee shop in south-east London has been ordered by its landlord to remove the “offensive” sign bearing its name. Fuckoffee tweeted a picture of a letter it received from the landlord’s lawyers:
The letter read: “We are instructed that you have either erected or allowed your sub-tenant to erect an offensive sign on the exterior of the buliding… without the permission or authority from our client to do so and this constitutes a trespass.” According to the letter, the Bermondsey Street coffeeshop could face legal proceedings or the forfeiture of its lease if it does not remove the sign. It will also have to cover the costs of the legal steps taken so far. [Daily Telegraph]
Chilean officers start to grant civil unions licences to both heterosexual and homosexual couples, marking the first time a same-sex relationship is officially recognized in the country. (BBC)(The Guardian)
Chinese city brings in penalty points for dog owners –
A city in eastern China is tackling negligent dog owners with a new driving licence-style system. The pilot scheme, which started this month, gives pooches in the city of Shaoxing a licence pre-loaded with 12 points which are then gradually docked for breaking the rules, Qianjiang Evening News reports. Taking a dog into a public place such as a school or restaurant will cost an owner three points, while “failing to take effective measures” to stop a badly behaving dog results in six points being docked. A microchip under the dog’s skin will hold data on the penalties incurred. The biggest penalties are reserved for owners who use their pets to cause deliberate wounding, and those who abandon or abuse their animals – they’ll lose all 12 points and be banned from reapplying for an ownership licence. “Like drink-driving and other bad behaviour, dog owners will be blacklisted, and won’t be able to raise dogs again,” says city official Zhang Zhuoming. The paper says Shaoxing has experienced problems with both stray and domestic dogs, with more than 7,000 dog biting incidents registered last year. [BBC]
Pigeons track air pollution in London with tiny backpacks –
A small flock of pigeons have been given tiny backpacks to monitor air pollution in London. The project was dreamt up by Plume Labs, a company focused on the environmental problem, and the marketing agency DigitasLBi. The rucksacks are fitted to the birds using small fabric vests, and the sensors inside are able to measure nitrogen dioxide and ozone levels. Only 10 birds are in flight at any one time, so the amount of data being collected is pretty small. However, it’s still a creative way of analysing the air that millions breathe in every day in the capital. [Endgadget]
Video of the Day –
X-Men: Apocalypse | Official Trailer [HD] | 20th Century FOX
The delegation of the government of Syria rules out starting any direct talks with the opposition delegation as U.N. sponsored peace talks enter a third day in Geneva. (BBC)
Kurdish officials say they plan to declare a federal region in northern Syria after being excluded from peace talks in Geneva aimed at ending the 5-year-old conflict. The move will combine three Kurdish-led autonomous areas into a federal system in what is set to alarm neighboring Turkey. (USA Today)
The U.S. military disciplines more than a dozen personnel for mistakes that led to the bombing of a Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) hospital that killed 42 people in Afghanistan last October. No criminal charges are pending. The partially redacted investigation report is expected to be made public shortly. (AP)
In the Missouri Primary, media outlets have held off calling yesterday’s races due to the extremely close results. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton lead in their party’s vote, but by just two-tenths of 1 percent ahead of Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders, respectively. Missouri law states a recount may be requested if the margin is less than half a percentage point. Either Cruz or Sanders or both can request a recount. These results are unofficial, until they’re certified by the Missouri Secretary of State, which reportedly could take up to four weeks. Trump leads by about 1,700 votes and Clinton’s edge is about 1,500. The state also needs to count the remaining absentee and provisional ballots; the deadline for overseas ballots is noon Friday. (The Hill)(CNN)
Europe’s largest floating solar farm to open –
The biggest floating solar farm in Europe is being constructed on a reservoir. More than 23,000 solar photovoltaic panels are being laid on the surface of the Queen Elizabeth II reservoir near Walton-on-Thames, Surrey. The farm, which will be the size of eight football pitches, is expected to generate 5.8 million kilowatt hours of electricity in a year. The energy will be used to part power a nearby water treatment works. Thames Water said construction of the solar farm, which is about eight miles (13 km) from Heathrow airport, will be completed by the end of March. The floating pontoon will be 57,500 sq m in size. [BBC]
The United States Food and Drug Administration announces it has relaxed its official requirements regarding the use of the abortion drug Mifeprex (RU-486). The current guidelines were based on 1990s medical evidence. Changes include reducing the number of physician visits required by abortion-seeking women, reducing drug dosage, and allowing women to take the drug for three weeks longer — now a total of 70 days. (UPI)
Mexico City, facing the capital’s worst air-quality crisis in over a decade, issues a temporary order that all cars remain idle one day a week. Today, authorities report a pollution index of 108 (bad) after low readings during Holy Week. Vehicles will also be forced from the roads one Saturday a month. The measure will begin next Tuesday, April 5, and run until Thursday, June 30, 2016. Starting July 1, improved technology will be in place at smog-check centers where all vehicles must be tested every six months. (AP via Fox News)
A Larnaca, Cyprus, court orders that 59-year-old Seif Eddin Mustafa, who was arrested by Cypriot police yesterday, remain in local police custody for eight days to assist Cyprus’s own investigation. Mustafa faces charges of hijacking, illegal possession of explosives, kidnapping, and threats to commit violence. It’s unclear if Mustafa had any explosives; the bomb belt he wore was fake, and officials are waiting for testing results on unidentified liquids found among his possessions. (AP via The Daily Courier)
The opposition plans to generate a recall referendum that would ask voters if President Maduro should be removed from office. The Constitution states a recall referendum can be held once the president has served half of his six-year term (Maduro became President on April 19, 2013) and at least 20 percent of registered voters sign the petition. (UPI²)
Ronnie Corbett, best known for The Two Ronnies, dies aged 85 –
Entertainer Ronnie Corbett, best known for BBC comedy sketch show The Two Ronnies, has died aged 85. His publicist said: “Ronnie Corbett CBE, one of the nation’s best-loved entertainers, passed away this morning, surrounded by his loving family. “They have asked that their privacy is respected at this very sad time.” Corbett was one of the UK’s best-loved comedians and along with Ronnie Barker, their double act was one of the most successful of the 1970s and ’80s. [BBC] See Video and List of the Day Ronnie Corbett in 2010
Video of the Day –
The Two Ronnies. Four Candles
List of the Day –
Ronnie Corbett’s best jokes
A man was marooned on a desert island. One day a beautiful woman arrives in a wet suit. ‘When did you last have a smoke?’ she asks. ‘Five years ago.’ So she gets out a cigar and he smokes it. She unzips her wet suit a bit and says, ‘When did you last have a drink?’ He said, ‘Five years ago.’ So she gets out a bottle of Scotch and he has a drink. Then she unzips her wet suit a bit more and says, ‘And when was the last time you played around?’ He looks at her in amazement and says: ‘You’re not telling me you’ve got a set of golf clubs in there?’
A cement mixer collided with a prison van on the Kingston by-pass. Motorists are asked to be on the look-out for 16 hardened criminals.
We will be talking to an out of work contortionist who says he can no longer make ends meet.
There was a fire at the main Inland Revenue office in London today, but it was put out before any serious good was done.
All those who believe in psychokinesis raise my right hand.
For some time, my wife’s had this ridiculous idea that I’m playing too much golf. Actually, it came to a head at about 11.30 last night. She suddenly shouted at me: “Golf, golf, golf. All you ever think about is bloody golf!”. And I’ll be honest, it frightened the life out of me. I mean, you don’t expect to meet somebody on the 14th green at that time of night.
This is a message for seven honeymoon couples in a hotel in Peebles: Breakfast was served three days ago.
French wine growers fear that this year’s vintage may be entirely spoiled due to the grape treaders’ sit-in.
West Mercia police announced tonight that they wish to interview a man wearing high heels and frilly knickers, but the chief constable said they must wear their normal uniforms.
It was revealed in a government survey published today that the prime minister is doing the work of two men, Laurel and Hardy.
We’ll be talking to a car designer who’s crossed a Toyota with Quasimodo and come up with the Hatchback of Notre Dame.
After a series of crimes in the Glasgow area, Chief Inspector McTavish has announced that he is looking for a man with one eye. If he doesn’t find him, he’s going to use both eyes.
We’ve just heard that in the English Channel, a ship carrying red paint has collided with a ship carrying purple paint. It is believed that both crews have been marooned.
A grandfather has gone missing after eating four cans of baked beans, two cauliflowers and a jar of gherkins. His family have made an emotional appeal for him not to come home for at least a fortnight.
Today is our anniversary. It’s just 12 years ago today when she said “I do”. It certainly surprised me, because I didn’t think she did.
That was the night when I leapt onto the dancefloor and did my rather racy impression of John Travolta. I suppose it must have been the animal in me. Well, I had a ferret down my trousers.
This new controller thinks I am the funniest man in Britain. He’s been told to stay in bed and take things easy for a while.
I remember that day clearly, because it was the one day there wasn’t a sale at Allied Carpets.
This joke dates back to 256 BC which, as scholars of ancient Egypt will know, was the year of the famous wildcat strike by the amalgamated union of eunuchs and allied sopranos, in a dispute over severance pay.
Since the last joke, I’d like to thank all those of you who have written in with suggestions about what I can do with my act, one or two of you with diagrams.
Offers of work have been flooding in. Last week I was invited to go on a round-the-world cruise. By the chairman of the Flat Earth Society.
This week I was asked to do a very important after-dinner speech. I said: “Do you want me to be funny?” They said: “No, just be yourself.”
A Malaysian court dismisses Malaysia Airlines’s bid to throw out a lawsuit filed by relatives of three people who went missing on Flight 370. The company argued that the disappearance of MH370 on March 8, 2014, occurred before the company came into existence as Malaysia Airlines Berhad (MAB) on September 1, 2015, and therefore has no liability to relatives. The court ruled MAB’s liability would be determined in a trial. (UPI)(Malay Mail)
Glass bridge: China opens world’s highest and longest –
The much-heralded “world’s highest and longest” glass-bottomed bridge has opened to visitors in central China. It connects two mountain cliffs in what are known as the Avatar mountains (the film was shot here) in Zhangjiajie, Hunan province. Completed in December, the 430m-long bridge cost $3.4m (£2.6m) to build and stands 300m above ground, state news agency Xinhua reported. It has been paved with 99 panes of three-layered transparent glass. And according to officials, the 6m-wide bridge – designed by Israeli architect Haim Dotan – has already set world records for its architecture and construction. [BBC]
Derrick Dearman a 27-year-old Mississippi man kills five people in the U.S. town of Citronelle, Alabama then kidnaps his pregnant ex-girlfriend from among the victims. Nearby, the Greene County, MississippiSheriff’s office takes the surrender and confession of the suspect. (Reuters)