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Last Updated: Tuesday, 17 May, 2005, 09:31 GMT 10:31 UK
The Magazine Monitor


Welcome to The Magazine Monitor, the home for many ever-popular features, including your letters and :

  • MON: Si's riddle
  • TUES: Reading list
  • WEDS: Punorama
  • THURS: Caption comp
  • FRI: Friday Objective
  • SAT: 10 things we didn't know this time last week


    PAPER MONITOR: A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.
    Today's front pages

    Today's amazing revelation, thanks to the Sun, are the TV tastes of Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Asked what he likes to watch at his home in South Africa, the 73-year-old said: "Footballers' Wives. I like that. And Corolation Street. [sic]"

    Meanwhile, there's more insight for the Monitor about what it, as part of the BBC, likes and dislikes (seeing as it doesn't know its own mind). Yesterday, you will remember, a Daily Mail columnist gave a long list of the BBC's likes (Palestinians, Irish republicanism, drugs and a "host of social issues") and dislikes (America, the free market, big business and religion). Today, thanks to a Telegraph letter-writer things are becoming even clearer. "For all its xenophobic hatred of America," writes Mike Gilding of Huntingdon, "it is ironic that the BBC political cabal most resembles Creationist Christians. Both have backed themselves into ideological corners (anti-market and anti-evolution respectively) that are rendered progressively more ridiculous by events. Both react by trying to rewrite the evidence. The BBC is now in the state that the Ulster Defence Regiment reached. The solution should be the same."

    Woah! Too many positions on religion and Northern Ireland! Any more will cause a short circuit somewhere inside the Monitor.


    In yesterday's Daily Question on the Magazine index, 62% of you correctly identified that it was George Lucas, not Jamie Oliver, who said "Dad goes bad". Today's question can be found on the index.


    Please, please, please can you stop using the picture of an injection being given in close up! (Universities getting Mumps advice, 16 May). It makes me shiver. Surely you could find a less explicit picture that would deliver the same message?

    In the Piano Man story (Fantastic response to Piano Man, 16 May) it is claimed that the music written by the mystery man was "genuine". As opposed to that nasty, fake music currently doing the rounds presumably?
    Simon Ellis,
    Stirling, Scotland

    Sharon Stone says single women can "have it all", Back to basis for Sharon Stone, 16 May). Well yes, of course. But a few million dollars in the bank to pay for child care and other incidentals, does take the edge of some of the problems most would face.
    Herts UK

    Re last week's riddle, someone who comes from Llanfairpwllgwyngyll can hardly afford to complain about a riddle that goes: Wjf hnfction mv jlpblly tzht!

    Re: Monday's Paper Monitor: I suppose the BBC won't be positive about Glazer, an American, exploiting the free-market to purchase a British Institution which has become big business, then.
    S Murray,
    Chester, UK

    What's "almost" imperceptible about these Sudoku witticisms?(Monitor letters, Friday


    Each Monday, Magazine reader Si gives you a riddle to puzzle over. It's a tricky one this week. And it's not inspired by anything Japanese.

    Carry It On?

    Just down past the gasworks, by the meat factory door, wonders how you manage to feed the baby? You just ain't seen nothin' yet. Any love, I've forgotten, every name in my life, but I better run away - there must be some blame. Here's where it all ends and tonite's the night, I'm gonna prove it to you. Do I have to?

    Send your solution using the form below.

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    The BBC may edit your comments and not all emails will be published. Your comments may be published on any BBC media worldwide.

    Last week's riddle

    This was entitled "Degrading", and read: "Welcome back uo uhe yfekly tjddle. Wjf hnfction mv jlpblly tzht. Ylh gswzgs ox juwvxru. Dkqp lvtj!"

    The solution was that the original text should read: "Welcome back to the weekly riddle. The election is finally over. The answer is corrupt. Well done!"

    The encoding works as follows: The first pair of words are in plain text, the second pair have their first letters incremented by one, the third pair have their first letters incremented by two and their second letters by one, the fourth pair have their first letters incremented by three, their second letters by two and their third letters by one and so on.

    The winner was Sasha Rathbone, Edinburgh, who writes: "This is the first riddle I have ever solved. Must be because I've just finished my degree."

    Wrong answer from P, Epsom, with: "Here's a solution you can make yourselves : get a big tub of 'juwvxru' and crush. Stir into warm water and there you have it...Primary School Food Tech all over again. (A suitably random answer to a suitably random riddle)"

    And this from Stewart Meyer, Llanfairpwllgwyngyll: "The answer is corrupt. You may think the same applies to the election. I couldn't possibly comment..."

    Si is a contributor to the Puzzletome website.


    PAPER MONITOR: A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.
    Today's front pages

    The Monitor often scratches its chin, wondering about the world. What should it think about Uzbekistan, for instance. What's the best way to stop anti-social behaviour? Is it cruel to torture a Dalek?

    But now Melanie Phillips in the Daily Mail has provided a handy cut-out-and-keep guide to what the BBC thinks about everything, which the Monitor intends to keep for easy reference. "With a very few honorable exceptions, the BBC views every issue through the prism of left-wing, secular, anti-Western thinking... It has a knee-jerk antipathy to America, the free market, big business, religion, British institutions, the Conservative party and Israel; it supports the human rights culture, the Palestinians, Irish republicanism, European integration, multiculturalism and a liberal attitude towards drugs and a host of social issues." Phew. The Monitor had no idea, but will find this list very useful in future.


    In Friday's Daily Question on the Magazine index, 65.7% of you answered incorrectly that Project Hampstead was Woody Allen's new film. It was part of Malcolm Glazer's Manchester United takeover deal. Today's question can be found on the index.

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