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The world's luckiest/unluckiest man

Just to prove that the story about the world's luckiest/unluckiest man really was true, here is an article about the man himself:

Frano Selak: 'world's luckiest man' gives away* his lottery fortune

A music teacher, Frano Selak, who was dubbed the world's luckiest man after cheatingdeath seven times before winning the lottery has now decided to give away his fortune.

The 81 year-old won £600,000 five years ago in the lottery in Croatia, to celebrate his fifth marriage, after earlier surviving plane and train crashes.

He also survived other disasters including landing on a haystack after falling out of a plane door that had blown open.

Now the pensioner has decided that "money cannot buy happiness" and has decided to live a frugal life.

He has sold his luxury home on a private island, given away his fortune to family and friends and moved back to his modest home in Petrinja, which is south of Zagreb, in the centre of the country.

He kept the last bit of h…

The possible history of fish and chips

The Portuguese gave us fried fish, the Belgians invented chips but 150 years ago an East End boy united them to create The World's Greatest Double Act 
They're a British institution as well as a national money-spinner, but how much do we really know about fish and chips?

For most of us, the classic combination of battered fish and chipped potatoes deep-fried in beef fat or vegetable oil is as English as the cup of tea that washes it down.

But just as tea originates in India or China, fish and chips is partly Portuguese and partly Belgian. 

The British can take credit for uniting these two Continental imports and creating a coupling that is loved the world over.

Today, Britain's 10,500 fish and chip shops have an annual turnover in excess of £650million.

This multi-million-pound industry, which currently accounts for a quarter of the white fish and more than ten per cent of the potatoes we eat, grew from humble beginnings.

One hundred and fifty years ago, in 1860, on the…

Should public transport be free?

“Car nation” Germany has surprised neighbours with a radical proposal to reduce road traffic by making public transport free, as Berlin scrambles to meet EU air pollution targets and avoid big fines.

The move comes just over two years after Volkswagen’s devastating “dieselgate” emissions cheating scandal unleashed a wave of anger at the auto industry, a keystone of German prosperity.

“We are considering public transport free of chargein order to reduce the number of private cars,” three ministers including the environment minister, Barbara Hendricks, wrote to EU environment commissioner Karmenu Vella in the letter seen by AFP Tuesday.

“Effectively fighting air pollution without any further unnecessary delays is of the highest priority for Germany,” the ministers added.

The proposal will be tested by “the end of this year at the latest” in five cities across western Germany, including former capital Bonn and industrial cities Essen and Mannheim.

The move is a radical one for the normal…

F1 bans "grid girls"

Walk-on 'grid girls' scrapped from Formula One races
Formula One says the custom does not resonate with its brand values and "clearly is at odds with modern day societal norms".
Women who walk on to the grid at the start of Formula One races will no longer be used, the sport's organisers have said.

The change will apply from the start of the new Grand Prix season, with the first race taking place in Melbourne, Australia on 25 March.

The women, commonly called grid girls, are often seen carrying the drivers' standards which indicate their race numbers and their location on the starting line.

They also often line the route that the top three drivers take as they head to the podium at the end of a race.

Sean Bratches, managing director of commercial operations at F1, said: "Over the last year we have looked at a number of areas which we felt neededupdatingso as to be more in tune with our vision for this great sport.

"While the practice of employing g…

Darkest hour / "We shall never surrender"

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The other day I went to see Darkest Hour. I have just read some of the reviews just now. I wouldn't rate it as highly as the majority do.

When you see a film (even one in Spanish), you could read some of the reviews. I recommend Rotten Tomatoes.


Movie Info

During the early days of World War II, with the fall of France imminent, Britain faces its darkest hour as the threat of invasion looms. As the seemingly unstoppable Nazi forces advance, and with the Allied army cornered on the beaches of Dunkirk, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the leadership of the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (Academy Award nominee Gary Oldman). While maneuvering his political rivals, he must confront the ultimate choice: negotiate with Hitler and save the British people at a terrible cost or rally the nation and fight onagainst incredible odds. Directed by Joe Wright, DARKEST HOUR is the dramatic and inspiring story of four weeks in 1940 during which Churchill's courage to …

Vive la baguette!

Macron: French baguettes should be Unesco-listed treasures
The French baguette should be listed as a Unesco cultural treasure, says France's President Emmanuel Macron.

"The baguette is the envy of the whole world," he said, in support of a national bakers' association that is promoting the application.

The bakers have been inspired by the success of Italy's Naples pizza, which was protected by the UN's cultural body last year.

Unesco's list aims to save traditions from globalisation.

The Committee for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage meets annually to evaluate nominations from around the world.

Why do the French think this is necessary?

The bakers say it is not just the name and shape, but the recipe and ingredients that need to be enshrined.

"Excellence and expertise must be preserved, and that is why it should be heritage-listed," President Macron told French radio after receiving a group of master bakers at the Elysée preside…

Can you drive confidently in wintry conditions?

How to drive safely in snow and ice 
Driving in snow and ice is tricky to master – but here are some tips that should help 
With more ice and snow forecast, it's time for many of us to revisit the skills and precautions required for safe winter driving.

Driving in such extreme wintry conditions is fraught with inherent risk, so it should always be avoided. But if you really have to venture out, there are a few things you can do and techniques you can use to make sure you stay as safe as you possibly can.

 So if you’re daunted by the idea of driving when the snow lays thick and even, have a read through our advice guide – it might make you feel a little more at ease.

Drive only if it’s necessary Yes, you’ve heard it on the weather forecast all the time, but people say it for a reason. Put simply, if you don’t go out, you can’t come to any harm on the road. Is your journey really that urgent or important? It probably feels like it is, but ask yourself what harm would come if you di…

Children have no right to privacy

Spanish court ruling gives parents permission to read their children’s WhatsApp messages 
The mother argued that her ex-husband had breached Spain's privacy laws by checking his nine-year-old's messages 
A father who was sued by his ex-wife for reading his two children’s WhatsApp conversations has been cleared by a court in northern Spain.

The mother claimed at a court in Pontevedra on 26 December that her daughter’s privacy had been breached by her ex-husband, after he ordered his children to hand over their mobile phones so he could read their WhatsApp messages.

The unnamed woman told Spanish daily newspaper El Español: “Both children told me that their father put them in a room and went through his daughter's conversations on her mobile phone.

When he asked his son to give him his mobile, he said no.” The father allegedly threatened his son with the police if he did not give up his password.

An earlier lower court in Pontevedra sided with the mother after she argued t…