Britain hit by “weather bomb” –
High winds and huge waves have affected north-western parts of the UK as bad weather hit power supplies and travel. The “weather bomb” brought hundreds of lightning strikes, temporarily cutting power across the Western Isles. Wind speeds of 144mph was recorded on the St Kilda islands, with gusts in excess of 80mph elsewhere.
Bully bashed by brilliance –
Louisa Manning (@xo_louisa_ox) whose letter to a former school bully who called her “manbeast” went received over 18,000 likes on Facebook has described the response as “crazy and overwhelming”. Miss Manning, a student at Oxford University, wrote the note after being invited on a date by her former tormentor when they met 10 years later in a restaurant.
Senate reports on CIA interrogations –
The UN and human rights groups have called for the prosecution of US officials involved in the CIA interrogation of al-Qaeda suspects. President Barack Obama said it was now time to move on. The summary of a classified Senate report says that the CIA carried out “brutal” interrogations of al-Qaeda suspects after the 9/11 attacks on the US and misled other officials about what it was doing.
Boston time-capsule discovered –
A time capsule thought to have been buried by Samuel Adams and Paul Revere in 1795 has been discovered in Massachusetts, USA. The container was found during repair work at the state house in Boston. See video of the day.
Cheapskate footballers conned –
Players at an English Premier League football club have apparently lost £30,000 to fraudsters in a scam. West Ham United footballer Andy Carroll and manager Sam Allardyce paid £11,000 for cut-price Fortnum & Mason hampers and Harrods champagne last month – and the pair but never saw the goods delivered. Andy Carroll
Coding error? –
Silicon Valley security firm Norse has said the massive hack on Sony earlier this year may not have been made by North Korea but by a disgruntled group of former employees headed by a person called Lena who was laid off last May.
More thumb action for 2015 –
New fashion app Grabble works like Tinder but with fashion items instead of potential dates being “thrown” or grabbed”.
Fifty Shades of Grey tying firemen up in knots –
The film version of the erotic novel “Fifty Shades of Grey” starring Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson premières in London and the London Fire Brigade are expecting a “spike” in people being stuck or trapped in handcuffs or rings. In November, firefighters were called by doctors at King’s College Hospital to cut two steel rings from a man’s genitals, which he had been unable to remove for three days and the brigade was called by a woman whose husband had become locked in a chastity belt. Jamie Dornan at the world première of “Fifty Shades of Grey” Double decker bus saves naked man from fire –
A man trapped in a house fire in Braintree, Essex UK may have had his life saved after a bus driver managed to manoeuvre his double decker bus close enough for the man to jump onto the roof. The man had been taking a shower and jumped from the third-floor window naked onto the bus. After throwing him some clothes the man managed to climb down with minor injuries.
Bonham Carter strips for fish –
Helena Bonham Carter has also got naked and hugged a 27kg tuna between her legs despite claiming to have a fish phobia. The photoshoot was in aid of a Blue Marine Foundation campaign against over-fishing. Bonham Carter separated from her partner Tim Burton on December 24th 2014. Helena Bonham Carter
The top winners at the Oscars are Eddie Redmayne (Best Actor in The Theory of Everything), Julianne Moore (Best Actress in Still Alice) and Birdman (Best Picture, Best original screenplay, Best cinematography and Best director). Eddie Redmayne
Video of the Day –
Birdman Spoof – Fred Armisen and Kristen Bell | 30th Film Independent Spirit Awards
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)
Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Harry respond to Obamas’ Invictus Games challenge –
When US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama challenged Prince Harry on social media, he responded by bringing in a big gun — the Queen. The Obamas posted a video of themselves on Twitter promoting the Invictus Games, an international sports event for wounded, disabled and sick military personnel and veterans. Harry, fifth-in-line to the throne and a patron of the Invictus Games, responded to the US President and his wife in kind. “Unfortunately for you, Flotus and Potus, I wasn’t alone when you sent me that video,” the Prince tweeted to the Obamas. He also added a video of his own, showing him chatting amiably with his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, while they thumbed through an Invictus Games brochure, just as the Obamas’ challenge lands in his cellphone. [ABC News] See Video of the Day
Large Hadron Collider: Weasel causes shutdown –
The Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator at Cern is offline after a short circuit – caused by a weasel. The unfortunate creature did not survive the encounter with a high-voltage transformer at the site near Geneva in Switzerland. The LHC was running when a “severe electrical perturbation” occurred in the early hours of Friday morning. A spokesman for Cern said that the weasel did not get into the tunnels, just the electrical facilities. [BBC]
According to Eurostat, the Eurozone’s economy grew by 0.6% in the first three months of 2016, faster than what was originally expected, with unemployment falling to 10.2%. This growth suggest that the eurozone’s economy is now bigger than it was before the start of the financial crisis of 2007–08. (BBC)
A court in South Africa rules that the decision in 2009 to drop over 750 corruption charges against PresidentJacob Zuma was irrational and called for a review of them. However, the court ruling does not automatically reinstate the charges against Zuma as a legal team must be set up to decide on whether to charge him or not. (Al Jazeera)
Protests erupt in various cities of Venezuela as the country faces increased food and power shortages, forcing the government to ration them, leading to widespread looting and violence. According to the opposition, who control the National Assembly, over a million people support its bid to start a referendum on ousting PresidentNicolás Maduro. (Al Jazeera)
Protests in France turn violent as protesters clash with police, injuring over 20 police officers and resulting in over 120 arrests nationwide. The protests are against a labour law being proposed in the National Assembly, saying it will reduce rights and deepen job insecurity for youth. (The Guardian)
Russia challenges US after Baltic jet face-off –
Russia says it was right to confront a US Air Force reconnaissance plane over the Baltic Sea on Friday. The Pentagon said a Russian jet fighter acted in an “unsafe and unprofessional manner”, and performed a barrel roll over its plane. Russia said that the American jet had turned off its transponder signal, which helps others identify it. It is the second incident in the Baltic this month in which the US has accused Russian planes of flying aggressively. US jets “regularly” try to approach Russia’s borders with transponders switched off, the statement said. Over the past 18 months, Russia has been repeatedly accused of the same practice over the Baltic and near UK waters. It is not clear how close to Russia’s waters Friday’s incident occurred. [BBC]
Video of the Day –
The magic ingredient that brings Pixar movies to life | Danielle Feinberg