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20 January 2021

This England: Pota-toe

This column – which, though named after a line in Shakespeare’s “Richard II”, refers to the whole of Britain – has run in the NS since 1934.

By New Statesman

Police were called after a woman found a suspected toe buried in a field in Gateshead. Detectives deployed specialist search teams to scour the area. Hours later, officers discovered the “toe” was in fact a potato with a mushroom growing next to it.
Newcastle Chronicle (Chris Lanigan)

Snakes and bladders

A Coronation Street actor said he was left “dreaming of snakes” after he found a 4ft royal python on his toilet seat. Harry Visinoni, who plays Seb Franklin in the TV soap, went to brush his teeth when he saw the reptile “staring at him” in his home in Hale. The RSPCA has named it Lulu, which it said seemed “appropriate”.
BBC Manchester (James Shepherd)

Meat is murder

The Smiths fan Max Paley, 25, has opened a Manchester curry house called This Charming Naan, in honour of his favourite band. Frontman Morrissey would be proud, as the takeaway is vegan.
Metro (Daragh Brady)

Bitcoin benevolence

A man who threw away a laptop hard drive containing bitcoin he believes is now worth £210m wants his council to let him search for it in landfill. He said he was willing to donate 25 per cent of the value of the bitcoins to his home city of Newport if he found the hard drive. “Imagine how great it would be to say ‘I’ve given everyone in the city a few hundred pounds’,” he told the BBC.
BBC Wales (Chris Rossi)

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This article appears in the 20 Jan 2021 issue of the New Statesman, Biden's Burden

Select and enter your email address Your weekly guide to the best writing on ideas, politics, books and culture every Saturday. The best way to sign up for The Saturday Read is via saturdayread.substack.com The New Statesman's quick and essential guide to the news and politics of the day. The best way to sign up for Morning Call is via morningcall.substack.com Our Thursday ideas newsletter, delving into philosophy, criticism, and intellectual history. The best way to sign up for The Salvo is via thesalvo.substack.com Stay up to date with NS events, subscription offers & updates. Weekly analysis of the shift to a new economy from the New Statesman's Spotlight on Policy team.
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