Father’s Day digest: Enthusiasts’ manual

Issue 1158

Father’s Day digest: Enthusiasts’ manual

In this issue…This Thursday marks the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo. We all know it is where Napoleon did surrender, but could you place it on a map? I’d imagine so. But what about Trafalgar? Or Agincourt? Or Balaclava? We test you with our special game of Spot The Battle.

Jordan Ellenberg is one of the world’s leading mathematicians. He claims maths can solve everything. So we asked our readers to come up with any question to put Jordan to the test. They didn’t let us down. Who, it is asked, put the ram in the ramalamdingdong? To his eternal credit, Jordan cracks it. As he does to the question, is my partner the right one?

Our Letter to My Younger Self is with one-time slacker king Beck. Like an updated Dickens hero, his life took some very strange turns around the age of 16. His place of refuge was the old city library in LA (where he immersed himself in music history), until it burnt down. He took off to London on a whim and then, almost by accident, became the creative force we now know. He is also very sweet about bringing up his kids.

John Bird looks at the double standards of us complaining about greedy bankers while still hoping smart financial moves will keep our pensions growing. Bees, meadows and good jokes also feature.

Polly Devlin makes a welcome return celebrating the joy of Mozart and pizza, sometimes together.

Which brings us to Hasselhoff. The Hoff is just a character, he tells Steven Mackenzie, mournfully, and people watched Baywatch because of the relationship between the character Mitch and his son, he insists. A good read, this.

Our featured vendor this week is Posty, who sells in High Street in Bath. He had been in temporary work, but circumstances changed and he’s now working with The Big Issue to get himself back up. He is a man who likes walking the Malvern Hills.

And we introduce our new Big Issue agony uncle, Mark Dempster. Mark has been through it – drug addiction, homelessness, prison. He credits his time selling The Big Issue with helping turn his life around. He is now one of the country’s leading addiction specialists with a Harley Street practice.

Also, we celebrate the life and work of Christina Broom, Britain’s first female press photographer; we question whether there is anything wrong at all with really flexible working; and Stephen K Amos talks about his pipe smoking peccadillo. You can also win socks.