How three disappearances grew into Hide & Seek
13 june 2005, big issue
We didn’t have the term ‘stranger danger’ when I was a kid, just strict rules and prohibitions so dumb that their constant repetition baffled me. Never get into a car with a stranger. Why should I? I ran everywhere. Beware of men inviting you to see their puppies. I hated puppies; they nipped. Never take sweets from a stranger. I didn’t like sweets, only chocolate. Whatever strangers did to children — and that was never explained — it wasn’t going to happen to me.
The Prince and I
Letting the riffraff into Cambridge
23 october 2004, guardian
I was a fabulously naive 17 year old but even I could guess that when the Cambridge admissions tutor asks, ‘Does your school realise this university has rather high standards?’ the interview is not going well.
Sex, drugs and knee replacements
The stench that hangs on the Olympics
27 july 2000, guardian
Manfred Ewald, once East Germany's most powerful sports official, left a Berlin court last week with a smile on his face and a suspended sentence for feeding male hormones to women athletes without their consent. ‘A relentless fuhrer’, the judge called Ewald, who ruled his country's dope programme through four Olympics.
Betting our lives
Labour’s love affair with the gambling industry
3 june 1999, guardian
Thank God for the tobacco industry, gambling's front man in the United States, Frank Fahrenkopf, tells his friends. ‘I say my thanks every morning when I say my prayers.’ Fahrenkopf, who is a former Republican party chairman, heads the American Gaming Association, and he has good cause to praise the Lord.
How to lose money and influence people
The lottery regulator’s catastrophic career
24 february 1997, guardian
Peter Davis’s career peaked three decades ago when, at 26, he came sixth in the country's accountancy exams. Since then he's been closely involved in two of Britain's biggest business failures, Harris Queensway and Lloyd's. Twice he's been paid to go away.