California wildfires torch record 2m acres as new blazes force evacuations

A couple who held a “gender reveal” party for their unborn child on Saturday set off a smoke bomb that was meant to send plumes of pink or blue smoke into the air. Instead, the pyrotechnic device torched dry wild grasses in El Dorado Ranch Park, around 80 miles east of Los Angeles, causing a […]

Bangladesh urged to lift Rohingya internet ban as Covid-19 rumours swirl

Aid agencies in the city in south-east Bangladesh, 20 miles from the border with Myanmar, have warned repeatedly that the virus could thrive in the camps and that medical facilities would be unable to cope. As of 10 June, 35 refugees have tested positive for Covid-19, according to the World Health Organization, while three have […]

Losers! Asleep! Not achieving! My week of waking up at 4.30am

5am – Look at Twitter. The algorithm is horrible. I am reading tweets from seven hours ago that are appearing at the top of my timeline. What’s the point of getting up at 4.30am if the tweets aren’t fresh? Talk to other people on Twitter who got up at 4.30am – early morning news producers, […]

Welcome to a new Premier League season – a journey without maps

The scaling back of budgets will offer a different kind of test for the band of ambitious middle-rankers. The band of well-run fine-margins “project” clubs – saleable attacking players, progressive manager, pop-up regime punching above its weight – had already begun to die back. Vale Watford, Bournemouth and Norwich. The league is also due a […]

‘The Olympics are dead’: Does anyone want to be a host city any more?

After Rome, Paris, Hamburg and maybe Toronto or Doha – all fighting to host the 2024 Games – the list of Olympic hopefuls may quickly dwindle until only bidders will be places like Beijing or Qatar or breakaway Soviet republic. These are places that won’t need to worry about local opposition when writing checks in […]

Ode to joy: how to find happiness in balloons and rainbows

I gathered pictures of these things and pinned them up on my studio wall. Each day I spent a few minutes adding new images, sorting them into categories and looking for patterns. Then one day, something clicked. I saw lollipops, pom-poms and polka dots, and it dawned on me: they were all round in shape. […]