MOHAMMED Merah is the man suspected of murdering four Jews - three of them young children – in Toulouse. Mohammed Merah is a 24-year-old French citizen of Algerian extraction, self-declared Islamist warrior and member of the al-Qaeda network, linked to banned Islamist group Forsane Alizza (Knights of Pride), and once arrested in the Afghan city of Kandahar.
Did Mohammed Merah murder Jewish children because little over week earlier, on March 12, UN worker Khulood Badawi posted a photo of a cloodied child on @KhuloodBadawi? Did it play a part in his thinking? (She has since taken it down, later writing: “Correction: I tweeted the photo believing it was from the last round of violence & it turned out to be from 2006.”)
STREAKER of the Day is 18-year-old Falkirk fan Lewis Fraser, 18. When Falkirk took on Ross County at Victoria Park, Fraser was stood with the away fans. Ross County scored. Fraser seized the moment. He vaulted the fence. He ran. And then he fell – his feet became entangled with his pants. He never stood a chance.
Fraser has been arrested and fined £500 for breach of the peace (ie: giving everyone a good laugh). Falkirk lost 1-2 – a scoreline from hereon known as the ‘meat and two veg’.
FABRICE Muamba: Anorak’s look at the Bolton Wanderers’ footballer in the news: Richard Littlejohn’s spite in the Daily Mail and the Sun’s cynicism in trying to own Muamba and his illness.
Daily Mirror (front page)” Why did they stop the game?”
The Sun (front page): “Did we lose? Why did they stop the game?”
Both papers lead with same story that Fabrice Muamba’s father Marcel asked him if he knew who he was. Aime Esalo, a friend of the Muamba family, says: “Fabrice said ‘Yes’ and the next thing he asked was, ‘Did we lose?’”
Fabrice asked why the game between Bolton and Spurs had been stopped. Hsi father replied: “Because of you.”
The Sun has spotted a campaign. Newspapers love a campaign – it’s what makes them stand apart. The front page invites readers to:
AZHAR Ahmed, 19, was in the dock at Dewsbury magistrates’ court today. Azhar Ahmed was there because he posted an odious badly written Facebook comment that allegedly breached the rules of the Communications Act 2003. He had been charged with a racially aggravated public order offence. That was ridiculous.
Mr Ahmed, from Ravensthorpe, West Yorkshire, denied the new charge.
He will stand trial at Huddersfield magistrates’ court on July 3.
Outside court, an estimated 50 far-right protesters staged noisy demonstrations when he arrived and left.
On the same day, Sergeant Nigel Coupe, 33, of 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, Corporal Jake Hartley, 20, Private Anthony Frampton, 20, Private Christopher Kershaw, 19, Private Daniel Wade, 20, and Private Daniel Wilford, 21, all of 3rd Battalion the Yorkshire were being repatriated.
FACEBOOK Page of the Day is Celebrities That Look Like Mattresses. It features: Kirstin Dunst mattress, Mickey Rourke mattress, January Jones mattress (quilted), Alan Cumming mattress, Britney Spears mattress, Lindsay Lohan mattress, Sandra Bullock mattress, Nadine Coyle mattress, Diane Kruger matress and Rihanna mattress. Sex sells. Dress for availability and comfort…
TUMBLR site of the day is One Tiny Hand – “ONE TINY STEP FOR HANDS, ONE GIANT LEAP FOR MANKIND”. It features celebrities with one tiny hand. People like: Beyonce, Tina Fey, George Clooney, Lindsay Lohan , Kim Jong Il, Sarah Palin, The Golden Girls (and I did laugh out loud), Kim Kardashian, Snooki, Mitt Romney, Tom Cruise and Oprah Winfrey (but not Michael Jackson).… Which one’s your favourite?
KYRON Horman – Anorak’s look at the missing Portland Oregon, child in the news…
A reader writes:
Kyron Horman disappeared from Skyline Elementary School in North Portland, Oregon, on June 4, 2010. The MCSO, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, who are in charge of the investigation, announced in June 2010 that the case would hopefully ‘be solved within a month’. Kyron Horman has been missing now for 1 year, 9 months and 16 days! The MCSO have yet to discover how he disappeared from that school; who took him from that school; or if he is being held alive somewhere or deceased.
THE Fever Pitch Years: two decades of English football’s gentrification. It started 20 years ago with this man and this book.
Of course there was the Taylor report too, and the Bosman ruling and Italia 90, but it was the publication of Nick Hornby’s Fever Pitch in 1992 that symbolised the fundamental shift in the world of football. A pastime described by the Sunday Times as “a slum sport played in slum stadiums and increasingly watched by slum people” was on its way to becoming the billion-dollar business we know today. Some call it progress; others beg to differ…
IS everyone anti-semitic – even the Jews? In Toulouse, France, a gunman has fired on the Ozar Hatorah Jewish secondary school.
Teacher Jonathan Sandler, 30, his sons Aryeh, three, and Gavriel Yissacher, six, and Miriam Montenago, the eight-year-old daughter of the school’s headteacher, have been shot dead. A 17-year-old has been seriously injured. (Update: he died.)
Why? Was it drugs? Honour killing? Mistaken identity? Is that why they died? Or do you look at the names and the school and the race of the victims and think they were the victims of anti-semitism?
LIAM Stacey has been named as the 21-year-old Swansea University student arrested over allegedly “sick” comments about Bolton Wanderer’s football Fabrice Muamba. (You can read the comments by @LiamStacey9 here). Perhaps as part of the 2003 Extradition Act, the US can send Chet Walken over to the UK to answer for his allegedly racist tweets?
On the left you can see other tweets form that address in which the tweeter apologises and claims his account was hacked – Click to make bigger.
The Mail picks up internet news that Liam Stacey is a biology undergraduate, originally from Pontypridd, South Wales.
He “posted tweets saying the remarks were not his and insisting he was not a racist. He claimed his account had been hacked and he hadn’t had access to his phone at the time the remarks were made.”
KATHLEEN McAuliffe says your cat is making you insane. Jaroslav Flegr is the guinea pig (unwilling) infected in by brian by Toxoplasma gondii, a single-celled parasite that lives in your cats poo. The Toxo-G causes toxoplasmosis. If pregnant women become infected, the bug can cause the foetus to be brain damaged or aborted.
Cats and human are at a crossroads. For a long time, humans petted the cats and the cats caught the mice. Humans fed the cats and the cats agreed not to piss on the carpet. Cats get petted and de-loused and humans get de-stressed. But it’s all about to change. Your cat is working you like a puppet. Oh, and, as ever, global warming is making things worse for humanity.
In 2002, research suggested that between 30 to 60% of people across the world re infected with Toxoplasmosis gondii.
A NEW, close-up video of Jason Russell’s nude meltdown in San Diego has been posted on TMZ. It shows the Kony 2012 campaigner pounding the ground, swearing and shouting about the devil.
Russell is being held in a psychiatric ward. His wife, Danica, has suggested he could not cope with the attention and pressure after his Kony 2012 video went viral and received widespread criticism.
The Ugandan government has weighed in now, too, uploading their own video on YouTube to contest claims made in Russell’s 29-minute long film. “The Kony 2012 campaign fails to make one crucial point clear. Joseph Kony is not in Uganda”, Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi says in the video.
JASON RUSSELL, the Christian hipster dad behind the “Kony 2012″ viral video campaign, has reportedly been hospitalised after masturbating in public and smashing up cars in San Diego.
According to reports from NBC San Diego and TMZ, the 33-year-old co-founder of the Invisible Children charity was allegedly found running through traffic in speedo-like underwear, screaming and vandalising cars. He was possibly under the influence of something.
FABRICE Muamba is the Bolton Wanderers footballer who stopped breathing on the pitch during his team’s FA Cup match with Spurs yesterday afternoon. Once upon a time he might have been the tabloid’s black immigrant, the son of an asylum-seeking African. But the tabloids have changed their view of him. (Not everyone has seen the light – twitter, as @LiamStacey showed us, is a haven for bigotry and spite.)
Firstly, how do the newspapers report on the horror?
The front pages are an escalation of Mumaba’s abilities:
Telegraph (front page): “FA Cup tie abandoned after footballer fights for life”
Express (front page): ” Premirship footballer, 23, fights for life after collapse”
HERE’S a horrible story of they do abortion in Texas:
Halfway through my pregnancy, I learned that my baby was ill. Profoundly so. [...] “I’m worried about your baby’s head shape,” she said. “I want you to see a specialist—now.”
[... B]efore I’d even known I was pregnant, a molecular flaw had determined that our son’s brain, spine and legs wouldn’t develop correctly. If he were to make it to term—something our doctor couldn’t guarantee—he’d need a lifetime of medical care. From the moment he was born, my doctor told us, our son would suffer greatly.
So, softly, haltingly, my husband asked about termination. The doctor shot me a glance that said: Are you okay to hear this now? I nodded, clenched my fists and focused on the cowboy boots beneath her scrubs.
WHEN Marilyn Hagerty went to the Grand Forks, North Dakota’s first Olive Garden eatery, she wrote a review. The thing went viral. Over 27 million Facebook likes is none too shabby. Marilyn Hagerty’s words in theGrand Forks Herald went:
“[The new Olive Garden] is the largest and most beautiful restaurant now operating in Grand Forks. It attracts visitors from out of town as well as people who live here.”
Marilyn Hagerty bought a chicken Alfredo (“warm and comforting on a cold day”) and water – the waiter recommended a raspberry lemonade and she conceded “on a hot summer day, I will try the raspberry lemonade that was recommended”. And “the server was ready with Parmesan cheese”.
THE last wedding Kim Kardashian had was televised in her reality show, prompting a marriage that lasted around the same length of time it takes a mayfly to live and die. Everyone cried ‘SHAM!’ at her and Kris Humphries, Kim K’s beleaguered and incredibly dimwitted husband, got all stompy and upset about it.
Kim clearly didn’t understand why everyone loathed her so much (being rich and of no-fixed-talent never helped anyone to be loved) and burrowed away and had a long thing about her next move.
And so, here she is, talking about getting married again.
“When I saw Khloé and Lamar get married — and they had their wedding on TV — I thought, ‘Oh, my gosh, that’s so exciting! That’s what I want!’” Kardashian told Allure magazine. “If you were to ask me now, that’s not what I want … I would just want it to be so special, with our family and close friends, and that’s it. Somewhere on a deserted island, very private. No cameras.”
THE winner of the Celebrity Mum of the Year for 2012 is…Katie Price.
Voiceover: Katie has three children by two different men, neither of whom she is with just at the minute. She last received the honour in 2007, beating shortlisted contenders Kate Moss, Jade Goody and Heather Mills McCartney. In 2012, Katie has seen off Holly Willoughby, Victoria Beckham and Amanda Holden.
HALF a century ago, an influx of lurid American horror comics prompted a major backlash in 1950s Britain. The Christian philosophy of The Eagle set the scene for a new generation of comics for boys, in which clean-cut heroes triumphed over clear-cut baddies, and wholesome youngsters had good clean fun. Rip-roaring adventures were had by all, and everything was solved up in time for tea.
By the end of the 1960s, however, papers like The Eagle and Victor were looking a bit tired, and more aggressive comics like Warlord and Battle moved in to replace them. In one sense they were even more old-fashioned, dominated as they were by the Second World War; but their style was more modern and aggressive. Their subsequent success prepared the ground for the most controversial comic of recent times: the visceral and violent Action, which first hit the streets in February 1976.
THE Beatles albums are the cornerstones of the popular music canon. Please Please Me, With The Beatles, A Hard Day’s Night, Beatles For Sale, Help!, Rubber Soul… They sold in their millions all over the globe.
In America, however, things were very different. The group’s early material was owned by different labels, leading to an unseemly scramble as different Beatles singles were released in competition with each other.
AS The Beatles go virtual reality and we get the chance to join the band, Ed Barrett picks 14 tracks of neglected Beatles gems:
Back in the early 1960s, popular music (or “the pops” as it was known) was a singles game. Albums (or “LPs” as they were known) were created by the simple expedient of slapping on a couple of already released hits and padding out the rest with assorted rubbish, often composed by managers and producers in order to earn “song-writing” royalties.
Keith Richards (or “Keith Richard” as he was then known) described them as “two hits and ten pieces of shit”. Then came the Beatles’ first LP: “Please Please Me, Love Me Doand 12 other songs”. But this was different: two hits, some classy covers of other people’s hits, and a bunch of potential hits for other acts to nick. The formula was changed at a stroke, and pop music would never be the same again.
The Beatles continued to release best-selling singles (and how) and their albums set new benchmarks of creativity and quality. So prolific was their output that the LPs often contained no singles at all.
Most groups would have killed for 45s like I Saw Her Standing There, All My Loving, Eight Days A Week, Yesterday, Drive My Car and the rest. Yet the Beatles were happy to use them as album tracks, alongside all the other idiosyncratic and innovative songs with which they delighted their fans and kept the competition guessing.
Now that their catalogue has been re-mastered in mono and stereo, attention is once again focussed on Tomorrow Never Knows, Strawberry Fields Forever, A Day In The Life, and all the usual suspects. So here instead, for your listening pleasure, is a 14-track album’s worth of neglected Beatles gems. As the song says, a splendid time is guaranteed for all.
P.S. I Love You
(Please Please Me, 1963)
Written by Paul McCartney in Hamburg two years earlier, this was chosen for the group’s EMI audition. Created to fit the prevailing pop template, it nevertheless demonstrates the distinctive Lennon-McCartney style that would flower over the next year.
All I’ve Got To Do
(With The Beatles, 1963)
A good example of how, when the Beatles copied other people, they ended up creating something different in the process. Their first two LPs included several R&B and Tamla-Motown covers, and this is a clear attempt by John Lennon to write a song on the style of the writers he admired, such as Smokey Robinson and Arthur Alexander, whose Anna (Go To Him) had appeared on the first album.
Till There Was You
(With The Beatles, 1963)
Paul McCartney’s sense of musical tradition is often seen as evidence of his tendency towards blandness and sentimentality. But this sensibility – when balanced with his many other qualities – was an important part of the Beatles’ appeal. It increased the scope of their music, taking it to places where others feared to tread, and Sgt Pepper would have been impossible without their willingness to experiment with all kinds of musical genres. This beautifully understated interpretation of Meredith Willson’s Broadway show tune sees Paul at his most controlled.
Don’t Bother Me
(With The Beatles, 1963)
The first George Harrison composition to appear on record, and one of the best. His typically deadpan voice is perfectly suited to this idiosyncratic but hypnotic tune.
I’ll Be Back
(A Hard Day’s Night, 1964)
A downbeat ending to the album-of-the-film-of-Beatlemania. Though structurally unconventional, it appears completely natural – a feature of Lennon’s most interesting compositions. Had it appeared a year later, it might have received the attention it deserves.
Every Little Thing
(Beatles For Sale, 1964)
Sung by Lennon, and melodically and lyrically a typical Lennon song. All of which shows how wrong you can be, as it was in fact a McCartney composition, written as a prospective single. Eventually consigned to side two of one of their least regarded albums, it has remained there ever since.
You Won’t See Me
(Rubber Soul, 1965)
The nonchalance of the performance is in marked contrast to the desperation of the subject matter – and the result is wonderful. Classic mid-period Fab Four: the cool “ooh-la-la-las” of the backing singers are a Beatle-ism every bit as recognisable as the enthusiastic “yeah, yeahs” and “ooohs” of two years earlier. Steve Harley would use the same device to profitable effect a decade later on his smash Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me).
I’m Looking Through You
(Rubber Soul, 1965)
A good example of McCartney’s craftsmanship. The original version (available on Anthology 2) was an attractive but slightly ponderous mid-tempo number with a hole at its centre. At the last minute, McCartney added a sprightly middle eight which fits perfectly and leads seamlessly into the following verse. The whole thing was thus invigorated, resulting in a perfectly formed pop song.
(Single, 1966; also Mono Masters, Past Masters)
Recorded with its A-side Paperback Writer during the Revolver sessions, this LSD-drenched sonic assault gave warning of what was to come – backward tapes and all. Lennon’s gratingly harsh vocal provides the template for Liam Gallagher.
Fixing A Hole
(Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, 1967)
This plangent marijuana-fuelled meditation was recorded in the company of a man who had knocked on McCartney’s door hours earlier, claiming to be Jesus Christ. Picks up where Paul’s interlude in A Day In The Life left off. “Somebody spoke and I went into a dream…”
(Magical Mystery Tour, 1967)
Speaking of which, this pleasing instrumental “dream sequence” from the Beatles’ misunderstood movie has undergone various trippy remixes over the years, and now makes a comfortable living as atmospheric TV background music.
It’s All Too Much
(Yellow Submarine, 1969; also Mono Masters, Past Masters)
More drugs. This Harrison epic was recorded in the early summer of 1967 just before All You Need is Love, and features a similar extended fade-out, replete with snatches of other songs (in this case the Merseys’ Sorrow). It would have fitted perfectly on Magical Mystery Tour, but ended up on the Yellow Submarine soundtrack album two years later. “All the world is birthday cake, so take a piece but no too much.” A delicious slice of British psychedelia.
Two Of Us
(Let It Be, 1970)
The bad-tempered sessions for the album that would eventually be known as Let It Be were mainly taken up with dismal Beatle originals and plodding versions of old rock’n’roll standards. This airy, optimistic tune was a welcome exception.
You Know My Name (Look Up The Number)
(Single, 1970; also Mono Masters, Past Masters)
An important element of the Beatles’ character was their sense of humour. An early amateur recording featured a girl with a National Health eyeball, and their fan club Christmas records were full of clowning, yet this skit on northern clubs is the only fully-fledged comedy number in their commercial catalogue. It features Brian Jones [well, was he?] of the Rolling Stones, who also helped with the sound effects on the band’s novelty hit Yellow Submarine.
Recorded in 1967, it eventually appeared in truncated form as an incongruous B-side to the group’s portentous final single, Let It Be. By then Jones was dead and the Beatles were history. Listening today, the amusingly incoherent ramblings from around the 3.40 mark bear an uncanny resemblance to the Fast Show’s “I was ve’y ve’y drunk”.
The Beatles albums are released by EMI. They are available individually in stereo, and collectively in mono and stereo box sets