This week I have been


The 2011 Tour de France race guide.


An Idiot Abroad

Listening to

The xx


(Or rediscovering) Hamlet - Nicki Greenberg's beautiful new version, thanks to the fabulous Snarkattack, who invited me along to see Nicki talk about the creative process behind the book.


  • An enormous serve of bangers'n'mash and a nourishing pint of Kilkenny at the Town Hall one dismal Tuesday evening.
  • A "Chachi" - chianina meatball sandwich - another brioche donut and some amazing chocolate tart at Beatrix, which Essjay has reviewed.
  • A lazy Sunday lunch at The Crimean. The Polish hunter's stew (bigos) was just the thing to revive me after a chilly bike ride.
  • Generous piles of fried food with oodles of chillies and sichuan peppercorns at Sichuan House
  • Succulent suckling pig at Liberteene.
  • An array of bright, zesty flavours at Chin Chin, where the only problem was having to choose only some of the items from what looks to be a menu that is all hits, no filler.


Films to watch on a hot summer day

It’s hot.

Dayum hot.

The kind of heat where you look at the running time of a movie to decide whether it’s worth your money.

The kind of day where Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol seems like a wise investment.

Then you leave the cinema. You spend as long as you can in a bar, but – sooner or later – you have to come home. And you want to watch some chilly movies.

Here are some tips:

  • Fargo
  • The Ice Storm
  • The Mighty Ducks
  • Touching the Void
  • Dolls, by Takeshi Kitano
  • When Harry Met Sally
  • Edward Scissorhands
  • Twin Peaks
  • Sarah Palin’s Alaska (only for the strong of stomach)
  • Snow Falling on Cedars, Cold Mountain and Dr Zhivago (thanks Courtney)
  • The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (the aptly named MrsInferno)
  • The Shining (MisterrGJones)
  • Mystery, Alaska (KelHunter)
  • The Empire Strikes Back, A Simple Plan and The Mighty Boosh Season One (Kirsty)
  • The Thing, Aliens vs Predator, Life in the Freezer, The Road (Dana) (David also recommended A vs P) ( the Road also rec’d by Paul)
  • Let The Right One In, Reykjavic 101, Forbrydelsen S1 and 2  (Yemayasverse)
  • Polar Express, Shackleton, Waterworld, Ice Age (all of them)  and all of Game of Thrones as well as the delightful Northern Exposure (Essjay)
  • The Big Chill (65 Degrees)
  • In Bruges (Michelle Griffin)
  • Happy Feet, Cliffhanger, March of the Penguins, Misery, anything by Warren Miller and Groundhog Day. Also Ice Road Truckers and Deadliest Catch. (Pete)
  • The Day After Tomorrow, Alive (Ben Knight)
  • 30 Days of Night. I’ve also been informed that there is a SyFy version of Alive. WITH YETIS! (thanks, FranDowdSofa)
  • Ice Station Zebra, King Lear, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves (Rusty)
  • Happy Feet II (The Brewer’s Wife)
  • Cool Runnings (Tummy Rumbles)
  • How I Ended This Summer (David)
  • Die Another Day (FarmersMarketsFan)
  • Ice Cold In Alex (Chris)
  • Youngblood (Phil)
  • Stalingrad (Dave)
Share other movies to cool down by in the comments. And be quick! We’re frying here!