Monthly Archives: September 2009

Prince Charles to commute on the Tube?

The Prince of Wales, who owns a fleet of rather nice cars (two Jags, two Audis, an Aston Martin and more, not to mention a few mud-spattered Range Rovers I’m sure he has garaged on his estates), is urging housing developers to design communities that rely less on automobiles and more on walking and public transport.

That’s right. So we can expect to see more of Charles and Camilla hoofing it for England on the high street, canvas shopping totes in hand. Or spot them in a ticket queue at Euston Station before they head off to Manchester for a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Or maybe not.

Why Brits like to talk about the weather

A recent study of 3,000 Britons shows that English weather is their favorite topic of conversation, beating out discussion of football. Reports the Telegraph:

“Researchers found our day to day lives are still characterised by traditional British activities like discussing the weather, enjoying fish and chips and drinking cups of tea.”

When asked to put these cultural traditions in perspective, psychologist David Lewis said, “By differentiating us from other nations they help create a unique identity, reinforcing our confidence in the attitudes and beliefs that make us typically British.”

Hmmm. This seems like a silly little study to me. Of course the Brits love their greasy fish wrapped in newspapers and builder’s tea at 4. It’s like concluding that Americans love baseball, crappy beer, and thinking they’re #1. And I have to quibble with the weather talk. I’ve been all over the world and talked about the weather ad nauseum with Italian waiters, drivers in India, and Norwegian grandmothers. Not to mention here in New England with fellow Yanks, where weather chatter’s taught at the knee.

Wherever you are in the world: do you find yourself chatting about the weather? Or is weather talk an alien concept to you? Add your comments below.

Keep up with Kate Middleton

If you’re besotted with all things Kate Middleton, check out a relatively new blog called The Daily Kate. It details her latest sightings and what she’s wearing, as well as covers all the rumors about when she and Prince William are to wed.

My prediction: The Daily Kate will have plenty of material over the next few years. Check out the link to the video of Kate and her sister being hounded by paparazzi. Ugh. I feel sorry for her.

Man Booker Prize 2009 shortlist announced

The winner of this prestigious fiction prize will be announced on October 6 in London. Six books are up for the award:

Fast readers have plenty of time to get them read before the prize is announced next month (she says as she’s just only finished last year’s winner The White Tiger a few months ago).

The Royal Family in hot water

Yet again, I might add. Thanks to the lovely Melanie McMinn for pointing me to these amusing teabag holders designed by Donkey Products, based in Germany. You’ll get the Queen, Prince Charlie, his lovely wife Camilla, and Wills and Harry for only 7.95 Euros, which includes 5 teabags. (I assume the holders can be used over and over again … if I get them, I’ll certainly be recycling Her Majesty.)