My latest opinion piece for the Guardian deals with an issue close to my heart – my ginger hair.
Ginger nut. Duracell battery. Carrot top. These hurtful taunts were a regular part of my life growing up with a mop of red hair in a tough inner-city comprehensive during the 1970s. And like a lot of other young people at the time who suffered because they looked different, I was singled out.
So when the ballet dancer Edward Watson hit back at the critic who panned his ginger hair, it hit a raw nerve. Like Watson I also have ginger hair, and trained with the Royal Ballet as a child, appearing in Romeo and Juliet as a pageboy. When auditioning I got the part because with my bright mop of red hair the company decided I didn’t need the wig they usually asked performers to wear. READ MORE
Sad to hear about the death of Paul Daniels. He was on every Saturday night when I was growing up. My grandfather Herbert pictured was a professional magician. Here is a clip of Paul doing a trick Herbert invented called the 4 Aces.
The Guardian today has reported that an Indian company has just launched the cheapest smartphone in the world which will retail at £5. International development organisations are increasingly using mobile phones to help lift the world’s poorest people out of poverty, using them to advise on everything from education to health. Yet last month the Guardian also reported an Amnesty International report which showed that most smartphones contain cobalt mined using child labour in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. How do you reconcile a £5 Indian smartphone designed to help the poor being made with child labour in the DRC?
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