Is it funny?

The eternal question

To TURKEY! In honour of the world's tallest man, who has apparently come here looking for love, God help him.

So I thought we could go to Turkey looking for . . . something funny in a newspaper.

What about this?

What I really, really like about this cartoon from Cihan is that essentially you can't see it, so they have to write out what the characters -- a donkey and a deer -- are saying to each other. If it's funny, it's funny in a rather lugubrious way. But I quite like that.

So, in answer to my own headline: yes, it is funny. Also, if you like this there are lots more brief conversations between the donkey and the deer on the site. They all have the same brand of pretty heart-rendingly bleak humour, in the best possible way. Check it out.





Sophie Elmhirst is features editor of the New Statesman

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Space Oddity? Dr David Bowie is treating former astronaut Buzz Aldrin

Ground control to major coincidence.

The 86-year-old former astronaut and second man on the moon Buzz Aldrin has been evacuated from the South Pole to hospital in New Zealand. Your mole thought this was yet another piece of dismal 2016 news, before the silver lining popped up on Twitter. Aldrin’s manager Christina Korp sent a thrilling message about her client’s treatment:

Yes, the real-life “Starman” is going to be treated by a doctor who shares his name with the late pop icon who wrote “Space Oddity”, “Life on Mars?”, “Ziggy Stardust” and “Starman”, among many other odes to space.

In fact, Bowie’s “Space Oddity” hit about ground control losing contact with the fictional astronaut Major Tom was released in 1969, a few days before Aldrin and Neil Armstrong became the first humans to walk on the moon. This mole’s whiskers are quivering at the poignancy.

I'm a mole, innit.