Tony Lankester

Tony, meet Bubba. He’s your new cellmate

Richard Catto thinks I should be jailed. He wrote this piece on his curiously titled Cape Town News blog which, basically, said that as I had created the spoof Thabo Mbeki Facebook page I should be thrown in jail. I see that Mr Catto belongs to the Ronald Suresh Roberts school of debate — play…

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And in the latest news from Sweden…

(A couple of years back I wrote (sporadically) a column for the Mail & Guardian Online. I don’t think anyone actually read it – it was usually buried several mouse clicks away from the real writers like Tom Eaton, Richard Calland and Ferial Haffajee. So, because I’m feeling guilty at not having posted anything on…

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A tale of four tossers

On Wednesday night I went to see Jethro Tull in concert. Not because I’m a fan, but because my wife is and one of my favourite things to do is go to live concerts. Another is to keep my wife happy, so this worked all round. In fact, even saying I’m not a big fan…

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Chop suey or McDonald’s? You decide …

We learned on Thursday that Standard Bank had sold 20% of its operations to the Chinese. As a customer, my wife is well positioned to take advantage of this — she recently spent some time heaving with the crowds in Bangkok, celebrating Chinese New Year with the 9 048 423,3 Thai people of Chinese descent. (Source: Wikipedia…

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We’re all in this together … not

I’m tired of hearing how I need to play a role in fighting crime. In the wake of Lucky Dube’s shooting last week, President Mbeki said we should “act together as a people to confront this terrible scourge of crime”. The Ministry of Arts and Culture said in a statement that “crime is a South…

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Why we’ll lose the World Cup

It’s Saturday evening. 9pm. The World Cup final. Fifteen men in green and gold line up to face fifteen men in white. It’s a showdown of epic proportions — England want to avenge past humiliations; South Africa are equally hungry and need to prove their worth as “past World Cup winners”. In the UK, millions…

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What’s for supper tonight? Ask Arnold

Somewhere a computer is quietly thinking about you. It is deciding what you want for supper tonight and sending instructions to trucks and warehouses to make sure that your local Woolworths can sell it to you. It is basing its thoughts on a whole range of factors — weather patterns (thanks, Al Gore), holidays (Eid,…

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Exclusive: Johannesburg goes mad

Pardon me if this blog is interrupted by the sound of gunshots; intermittent power failures or typhoons, but I’m in Johannesburg at the moment. I lived here for seven happy years before venturing through the curtain of pallid stares from eyes-too-close-together in the dusty Karoo and settling in the Cape. Returning — as I do…

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When Mick Jagger sang ‘Sympathy for the Devil’, was he referring to record companies?

I read on the Mail & Guardian that there is an intriguing trial under way in Minnesota. Jammie Thomas is one of 26 000 people being sued by a viper’s nest of record companies for making available songs on her PC for download via Kazaa, a popular peer-to-peer MP3 download mechanism that replaced the trailblazing Napster….

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It’s official: 2010 won’t exist

There has been much talk lately of trademarks in light of 2010. My view is that Fifa has gone slightly bonkers on the whole subject … a year is, after all, just a year. But yet virtually every single iteration of the year has been trademarked and protected by phalanxes of lawyers (is that the…

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