Amazing what you can learn while reading the paper on a plane stuck on a Belfast runway due to fog at Heathrow! Below are just some of the tantalising facts that I picked up this morning.
Sweden has just added the letter W to their language, extending their alphabet to 29 letters. W was previously represented by V. (Times2)
The Tower of London has purchased a digital bugle (with a button, batteries and a built-in speaker) to ensure that the Last Post can continue to sound from the grounds every evening - even if the real live bugler isn't available. Full points for business continuity. Maybe they'll now send a Beefeater down to B&Q to buy a Response Alarm Kit for the crown jewels in case the main security system fails? (Times)
Tony Blair's trip from 10 Downing Street to Buckingham Palace on 5 April 2005 to ask the Queen to disolve parliament cost the Labour party £53.46.
The party forked out a further £299 during last year's election campaign to hire Star Trek costumes so that Labour activists could follow around the Conversative candidate John Redwood and capitalise on his "The Vulcan" nickname.
And I can't fail to mention the £264,000 to buy John Prescott's battlebus, and £75,000 for adapting it. Surely he could have got 2 Jags cheaper?
More seriously, the Iranian president has lifted the ban on women watching football in Iran. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is quoted as saying "The best stands should be allocated to woman and families in the stadiums in which national and important matches are being held ... The presence of women and families in public places promotes chastity." (Guardian)
Since being forced to produce a version of Windows XP that ships without Windows Media Player, a total of 1,787 copies XPN had been sold by the end of March this year. That's 0.005% of the 35.5 million copies of XP sold in Europe in the last nine months. (Guardian)
And in last place, I bring up the subject of Jade Goody who powered away from the London Marathon start line on Sunday morning wearing a very chav Louis Vuitton bumbag. You know Jade - the one who came fourth in a series of Big Brother and has made a career out of her unfortunate antics. Her training regime caught up with her at 18 miles - beer, curry and no running. Shouting "I'm dying! I'm dying!" as she collapsed, Jade was escorted off be medical staff. (Guardian)