Columnist of the Week

All the way from Houston, Texas

The inaugural edition of the keenly anticipated Columnist of the Week sees this week's prize going to...

Leon Hale of the Houston Chronicle!

Leon is a legend. He is Texan, 88 years old and writes a column THREE TIMES A WEEK. He has written books called things like Home Spun and Supper Time.

Hallmark style = utter bemusement at the modern world. Example (on a recent visit to New York): "The greatest multitude I've enjoyed on this trip was the one that forms on weekends in Times Square, where automobiles are no longer permitted. Who could know how many folks gather there? Untold thousands, who wander about and talk on their little phones. Calling friends, I guess, who are on the other side of the street. "Can you see me from here?"




Sophie Elmhirst is features editor of the New Statesman

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Word of the week: Michellania

Each week The Staggers will pick a new word to describe our uncharted political and socioeconomic territory. 

After brash Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump paraded his family at the national convention, the word of the week is:

Michellania (n)

A speech made of words and phrases gathered from different sources, such as Michelle Obama speeches and Rick Astley lyrics.


"I listened hard, but all I heard was michellania."

"Can you really tell the difference between all this michellania?"

"This michellania - you couldn't make it up."

Articles to read if you're sick of michellania:

Do you have a suggestion for next week's word? Share it in the form below.