Posts tagged ‘UK’

May 18, 2016

Feminism & Film

Thelma and Louise

Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis starting the selfie craze in Thelma and Louise

What does it mean to be a celebrity feminist and do they help or hinder the cause? Can they even call themselves so?

In an article in The Guardian, a journalist forensically analyses the contribution of so-called Hollywood Feministas (my word) and whether they failed. Feminists such as Emma Watson are berated

read more »

Advertisements
May 18, 2016

All Hail Mayor Sadiq Khan

Sadiq Khan The Chatterjis Blog

What an amazing city London is. Not only a world capital, a fashion capital, an art and architectural capital, but can it now claim to to be the most tolerant and integrated capital city?

After what everyone agrees was a racist, vicious campaign by the Tories and their candidate, Zac Goldsmith, the majority election of

read more »

October 19, 2015

Step This Way For Amazing Skin

Sex and the city Samantha chemical peel

Will I look like Samantha in that scene in Sex And The City? That was my only question when asked by the fantastic and patient clinician at the Sk:n Clinic during my consultation. No!

I don’t know quite what started my obsession reading about skin peels but the more I read the more I was convinced I needed one.

read more »

August 27, 2015

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, Bidisha & Mohammed Osborne

Yasmin Alibhai Brown and Bidisha

For a few seconds, time stopped and the audience dropped a collective jaw as Yasmin Alibhai-Brown asked if we knew that the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne’s brother was a Muslim convert, Mohammed Osborne. No we didn’t! But…but… how did that happen?

exotic_england_ Yasmin Alibhai Brown

It was a sell out session with the charismatic journalist and writer,

read more »

December 1, 2014

Baby Name Trends, What to Avoid

muppetbabies

Besides Christmas, December means endless lists summarising the year that was and we begin the reflection with a look at popular baby names.  Personally I’d want to know in order to avoid them, just like fashion trends sometimes it’s best to go off piste although perhaps not as much as Gwyneth Paltrow!

Reflecting the diversity of Britain, Muhammad shot to the number one spot as the most popular baby name, perhaps Wills and Kate can consider it for little No.2 next year? I’m a Muslim and this is the

read more »

October 7, 2014

Film Review: Pride

pride

You have to watch this film while it’s currently on general release.

It has been several years since I came out of the cinema and felt this good about a film and it is even better that the story is true.

read more »

March 28, 2014

Nick Clegg v Nigel Farage

clegg farage

Did you hear the Great Debate yesterday between the above? Probably not if you don’t live in England or have a job as it was aired during office hours.

Anyway, there is much commentary and analysis about it today in the papers and on Radio 4. Wide consensus is that Farage won.

read more »

March 14, 2014

Letters From a Prince

Prince Charles

Earlier this week the Guardian newspaper won a nine year court battle with the UK government in order to see letters sent by Prince Charles to UK ministers under the Freedom of Information Act.

The letters apparently show evidence of the prince lobbying senior government ministers to change policies that he is unhappy with.

read more »

November 13, 2013

Hakkasan

hakkasan-slider
Are we cool? We go to Hakkasan, Mayfair for dinner and cocktails. Or are we stuck in the noughties? We used to go there when we were young and crazy, we would drink cosmos, giggle with strangers and go on to a club.
We went on Saturday – do people still go to Hakkasan? Apparently, yes.

read more »

September 28, 2013

The Sound of Cinema

StarWars

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…. the opening lines of one of my favourite movies of all time, Star Wars.  The majestic musical score written for the Star Wars movies has been voted the UK’s favourite soundtrack as voted for across all BBC Radio listeners.

Instantly recognisable from the first notes

read more »

September 23, 2013

Crime and Punishment

crime and punishment

I have a beautiful hard back copy of the literary classic, Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.  Even my copy with its font size 7 type it is the size of a brick.  I have been looking at it for years thinking about reading, feeling guilty that I hadn’t, so a few days ago I finally picked it up and read the foreword.   The following day one of my best friends rang me to say she had two tickets to watch Crime and Punishment at the Citz in Glasgow and I jumped with glee to be given a sneak preview into the book later that evening.

read more »

September 14, 2013

From Scotland With Love

Aberdeenshire-20130831-00875

Loads of my friends in London have never been further north than Manchester.  Scotland? Why go there when you can fly somewhere warm for the same price?  I understand that point, however, home is where the heart is and mine is firmly in Scotland.

I live in London and Delhi too and I love the difference in climate, culture and things to do.  A rather compact country, Scotland is best

read more »

September 8, 2013

London From The Shard

the shard london
So! I went up The Shard and what a fab view (surprise surprise). It was my friend’s birthday and she wanted to do something special/touristy and so 8 of us trekked over to London Bridge tube to see The Shard.
I have always wanted to go ever since

read more »

August 12, 2013

Wanker Of The Week

Eddie Shah court case

Step up Eddy Shah!

Where does this guy get off? Apparently by reckoning underage girls i.e. CHILDREN that consent to sex must take the blame for the abuse they suffer. He doesn’t mean “rape rape” he means girls who “throw themselves as celebrities” I certainly hope he’s not describing himself as a celeb, I thought he was Asian until I saw his gross face on our screens after being acquitted for raping two underage girls (acquitted due to lack of evidence, not that he didn’t do it).

read more »

August 3, 2013

Swan Lake Reloaded

swan-lake-reloaded

Swan Lake… I loved it as a child and I’ve seen it so many times I lost count.  It’s my macaroni of entertainment…comforting pleasure.  I even saw Swan Lake at the Royal Albert Hall and Princess Di was there a few boxes away.  (Yes, I’m kinda old and yes she was stunning and yes so were her bodyguards!).  This coming week a new darker street dance version of Swan Lake is in town

read more »

August 1, 2013

Rihanna 1 Topshop 0

Rihanna topshop t shirt

Nice to say something nice about Rhianna that doesn’t include her bum cheeks. (On that note, put them away Rhianna I’m trying to eat my cocopops).

She won her case against Topshop for using her image on their T-shirts. Topshop tried to argue that the photographer owned the copyright in the photo (correct)

read more »

July 29, 2013

I’m Off To Co-op

co_op

Oh my god! The Co-op supermarket has given lads’ mags 6 weeks to clean up their front covers or they will no longer stock them.

I can’t believe it. I remember as a very young girl feeling hugely uncomfortable

read more »

July 26, 2013

Handsome Enough To Tempt Us To Spend!

Jane-Austen-new-bank-note

What wonderful news that Jane Austen is to be commemorated on our new £10 notes. Shock, horror, can campaigning really work?

The glorious Bank of England announced that it was going to replace Elizabeth Fry, the only female historical figure on a banknote, with Winston Churchill.  This sparked a huge campaign

read more »

May 17, 2013

Eh? Did Beckham Play Football?

DAVID-BECKHAM

David Beckham retired from football yesterday?

Excuse me, did he play football? Still? I thought he was just a deliciously fit H+M model (thank youuuu H+M for selling your crappy £3 pants on the yummiest bod ever!) And he won us the Olympics, but wasn’t that because of his cute smile? And isn’t he World’s Best Dad or some rubbish?

I used to think he was a bit overrated with his naff hair and spotty face and then all of a sudden, he kissed a frog and turned into a prince! 

read more »

May 8, 2013

Asia House Festival of Asian Literature

fal_banner__gallery_image

Freedom is the theme of this year’s Asia House Festival of Asian Literature, the seventh annual event. From 7-22nd May, some of Asia’s greatest literary exports will join some of the best British Asian writers and thinkers to discuss freedom in all its forms: freedom of expression, education, travel, justice, freedom to read the truth and to live in our chosen ways.

Taking place in a few venues in Central London the programme and events for adults and children is varied and wonderfully diverse.  Want to know how to get your work published in Asia or the UK? Want to see a curry demonstration from Michelin-starred chef, Atul Kochhar?

read more »

May 8, 2013

Opening Night With Michael Palin

Michael Palin John Swannell

The Asia House Festival of Asian Literature got off to a roaring start by hosting an audience with the wonderfully charming Michael Palin at the Commonwealth Club, London.

Palin was launching a new book, The Truth, excitingly his first foray into fiction. The audience, however, were keen to grill him about his travels. He handled everyone’s question with the same wit and eloquence that we are used to seeing on screen, even though surely he must have been asked some of these questions thousands of times.  Palin had us all captivated

read more »

May 6, 2013

Fashion Victims and Villains

Soho neon pocket tank top 2

Top by new ethical fashion brand, sketch london.

Left-leaning newspapers have been running a series of articles ever since the Bangladesh garment factory collapsed.  The death toll has now sadly passed 500, mostly women, but why are consumers and fashion brands being made to bear the majority of the guilty burden? That fingers have been pointed at some brands was inevitable and fashion is regularly targeted for being a poison of the world: the very sick and visible face of capitalism and greed.  In Bangladesh and India the tragedy is being reported as a corrupt failure of building regulations not a story about Evil Fashion Brands.

The usual suspects of British ethical fashion have been carted out with the usual snippets of condemnation and hissing at the likes of Primark, GAP and so on.  Will consumers care they ask? Can they afford to I ask?  This could be a long article so please get a cuppa or a glass of wine.  I promise you will learn a thing or two.

read more »

May 4, 2013

Guest Post: Asia House Literature Festival

The Bastard of Istanbul Elif Shafak

Women, Freedom and the Islamic World

The diversity and eloquence of this all-female panel gave a fascinating insight into what female freedom means in Muslim states today

By Hannah Thompson

Asia House is no stranger to distinguished figures discussing complex issues, and this, the second event in this year’s Festival of Asian Literature, was no exception.

Although technically a pre-event (the festival proper begins on May 7th, with guest Michael Palin, no less) the guests were just as renowned and the topic just as wide as if a central element of the festival itself. Women, freedom and the Islamic world – one could hardly have chosen a more expansive, nebulous discussion, and yet the writers on the panel addressed the idea with characteristic thoughtfulness and poise.

asia_house_logo

Chaired and led by journalist and presenter Samira Ahmed, the panel included Turkish author Elif Shafak (The Bastard of Istanbul; Honour), Iraqi political activist and author Haifa Zangana (Dreaming of Baghdad) and Iranian journalist and self-professed “memoirist” Kamin Mohammadi (The Cypress Tree).

read more »

April 25, 2013

Wax Off

bliss-poetic-waxing-kit

 

 

Did I miss something? Poetic?

Ok, I’ve tried to avoid it and ignore it and hope it just went away but I am now forced to join the pubic hair debate that is rocking the nation (well, it is if you read leftie papers).

Like the 30-something journos I am gutted that 92% of 8-16 year olds have seen hard core porn. Hard core! And apparently the effect of this on our children’s minds is that they feel pubic hair is gross and girls need to be bare “down there”.

read more »

April 14, 2013

Who Deserves Military Honours?

CEREMONIAL PROCESSION ENTERS WHITEHALL

Queen Mother’s funeral

Former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher will receive military honour for her funeral and this has caused great concern amongst some, especially (apparently) from Buckingham Palace.

That there seems to be huffing and puffing about an extraordinary Brit receiving military honours usually reserved for Royalty is astonishing.  Margaret Thatcher did far more for her country than the Queen Mother and Princess Diana

read more »

April 9, 2013

The Iron Lady Dies

Margaret Thatcher

You will have read and heard enough of Margaret Thatcher’s death yesterday on 8 April.  Although she was a polarising politician like no other, she was Britain’s first and only female Prime Minister.

I grew up in a world when a woman ran the country and was an excellent stateswoman, holding her ground amongst the other great leaders of the world.  My mother would often remind me that her father owned a shop and look where she was! Prime Minister of Great Britain!

read more »

April 5, 2013

It’s Football Not Politics!

Paolo Di Canio Sunderland

The new manager of Sunderland Football Club has caused more controversy and taken over more newspaper inches over his past political affiliations than his job and he’s not pleased about it.

In the past, Paulo Di Canio, a former Lazio player, was recorded as stating he was a facist but not a racist during a mix up of prejudices in a conversation.

read more »

April 4, 2013

Not So Great Britain

The funerals of the six Philpott children at St Mary's church in Derby on 22 June 2012

The Philpott case sends shivers up us all. There were several programmes on yesterday that went over the case (the couple and their friend having been found guilty of manslaughter) and I was moved to tears watching one of them. I guess it was worse because I was with my baby nephew and we were curled up on the sofa together.

You’ll know the case facts but at the risk of going all Daily Mail, how on earth were 11 children allowed to live in a 3 bedroom house?

read more »

March 7, 2013

Zip Your Lips

ikea almond chocolate tart

At work we fell into two camps during and following the horse meat scandal.

Smug smirky looky-downy middle-classes who sneer “what do you expect! A Findus frozen lasagne hahahah and you think you’re eating beef? Come on!”

And…

Smug smirky looky-downy vegetarians who sneer “hang on you disgusting eaters of flesh! What is the difference between eating a cow and a horse?”

I fell into the second camp. “It’s a good week to be a veggie, hohoho” my fellow veggies and I chuckled.

Not so!  Do you like chocolate? And almond? I heart both.  And if you were in the Second Worst Place on Earth (Ikea), does your partner have to promise to buy you a chocolate almond cake to shut you up that “all the cool couples in the world are not in Ikea on a Saturday”?

Ikea have found poo

read more »

March 2, 2013

Women are from Earth, Men are from Penis

Delhi-Meri-Hai

Delhi Meri Hai… ‘Delhi is mine’ ad campaign currently running on the radio.

The awful Delhi gang rape at the end of last year cast a thick cloud over city and its residents.  Regular Chatterboxes will remember I spend half the year in this crazy/amazing city.  When I arrived back in the first week of January the media and locals were soul searching and digesting the gravity of what happened.

It’s now the end of February and I have listened to various radio stations every morning whilst doing my yoga moves

read more »

January 29, 2013

That’s Not My Baby

nursery

I visited a friend in Delhi today who has just given birth and, being British, found the differences in procedures and norms quite fascinating.  My dear friend was in a private hospital and is recovering well, however, when I arrived at the hospital I wasn’t allowed to take in the flowers I had just spend an hour selecting and directing how the arrangement should be done and when I walked into her room, NO BABY!

In India babies are kept

read more »

November 22, 2012

Equality And The Church

Earlier this week, the Anglican Synod voted against women being ordained as Bishops. The result cause dismay and disbelief amongst fellow clergy, some of whom are women, and worshipers as the traditional and orthodox views were carried out.

There was one question in particular that struck me. Why is the Church of England not subject to the same employment equality laws as every other organisation in the country?

read more »

October 3, 2012

Don’t Take Sweets From Strangers

Do you remember learning not to take sweets from strangers? It was taught to my sister and me in primary school. What is a stranger? A grown-up that you don’t know. Would you take a sweetie from a stranger? NO! I would go and find a grown-up that I know and shout mummy if I couldn’t see anyone I knew.  Simple.

I have to admit, I did grow up being terrified of these “strangers” with “sweeties” and the child-catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang didn’t help much.

Did you know this lesson is no longer taught to children?

read more »

September 24, 2012

Possession

Four members of one British Asian family from Birmingham were jailed today for killing a pregnant woman as they thought she was possessed.

The victim was a 21 year old woman from Pakistan who had come to Britain after marriage.  On the other side of the world from her own family

read more »

September 14, 2012

Crooked Cops

Is the police force a joke in Britain and we, the public, are only just realising this?  In England as many as nine police chiefs are under investigation for misconduct, some for gross misconduct such as withholding material evidence in a murder trial.

In London the Met Police are being sued

read more »

September 4, 2012

Paralympic Boos And Snubs

Week 2, Day 2 and controversy overshadows the awesome Paralympics. First, there is the booing of George Osborne as he presented medals, secondly there was the alleged “snubbing” of Duchess Catherine, and thirdly and the most abhorrent was the attack on military guards at the Olympics.

The Olympics is supposed to be A-political. It is an event to celebrate the achievements of the greatest athletes regardless of creed or colour. Sorry for the sermon, but I feel slightly agitated.

read more »

August 23, 2012

British Press Fear Leveson

The British press, including The Sun, have chosen not to run Prince’s Harry story showing naked pictures of him in a hotel room in Las Vegas because they fear the backlash of the Leveson Inquiry. Thank God!!!

What someone does in the privacy of their hotel room unless they are committing a crime is nobody’s business but theirs. Prince Harry deserves that privacy surely. If he wants to play strip billiards, then so be it. Who cares????

read more »

July 24, 2012

Please Plug the Gap

The Chancellor, George Osborne has entered the tax dodging debate by declaring cash payments to plumbers and the type ‘morally wrong’.  He has some cheek as both the coalition and previous governments have fallen over themselves to help create and encourage the system whereby the rich pay hardly any tax at all.

Last week it was reported that £13 trillion is lost every year through loop holes

read more »

July 5, 2012

Shaken Not Stirred

A new exhibition opens in London on 6 July at the Barbican celebrating 50 years of the James Bond franchise.  Displaying gadgets, props and costume from arguably one of the world’s most iconic movie brands. 

Sadly I don’t think Daniel Craig will be there but

read more »

July 3, 2012

Olympic Torch Relay Security Blunder

The top security team of 70 Metropolitan police officers especially selected from 644 applicants failed to spot and prevent two mischievious school boys from breaching the security around the Olympic torch relay

read more »