Recent readers will know I'm a big girl when it comes to spiders. Today I got an SMS, followed by a phonecall, from an ex-pupil of mine. He has just been bitten by a spider, and asked me what to do. I told him to find a doctor and if possible, take the spider with him, or at the very least, try and describe it.

Choral verse

I'd like to join the growing chorus of calls for President Thabo Mbeki to get an HIV test, along with all other senior members of parliament. While he's about it, perhaps he can settle the rumours once and for all that he's not a soaker.