Peter Rhodes on a Hollywood legend, an odd warning and a very public hiding place

A sinister cyber attack on the 111 service meant the NHS was not working properly for a few days. No change there.

Paul Newman – steak or burger?
Paul Newman – steak or burger?

The Kid Who Would be King is a 2019 fantasy romp involving a bunch of children and Arthurian legend. For its Film 4 screening a few days ago it came with the warning: “Features bullies and spooky demons.” Isn't that the whole point?

A reader takes me to task for using the word “ambiance” rather than “ambience” in my dispatch from the Cotswolds. It happens to be one of those rare words in the English language which can be correctly spelled either way. Or should that be “spelt”? (And don't get me started on dispatch and despatch).

It was a famous and hideously inelegant quote, and it horrified his wife. Paul Newman, married to Joanne Woodward for 50 years, had this to say about adultery: “Why go out for a hamburger when you have steak at home?” A new documentary on the Hollywood legend repeats the claim that “No Burgers” Newman indeed had an affair - with a female journalist called Bacon. Oh, the irony.

Thanks for your memories of risk-taking by boys (it is apparently in the hard-wiring of the male brain). The commonest warning from frazzled parents when they caught us fighting with sticks or throwing stones was: “You'll have your eye out.” I only encountered one lad who had suffered that fate. We were both ten and, meeting him on holiday, I instantly envied two things about him. The first was his cool name - Pip. The second was the result of a stick fight he'd had some years before. Believe me, when you are ten and male there is nothing so enviable as a glass eye.

Edmund King, president of the AA, has revealed his technique for preventing his car from being stolen by thieves using hi-tech gizmos. First, he puts his keyless fob in a pouch. He puts the pouch inside a metal box. He then puts the metal box in his microwave cooker at the back of his house. And then he tells the Daily Telegraph about it, so we all know Mr King's car fob is in the microwave. I may be missing something here.

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