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Difficult Pot Luck Quiz:  Pot Luck

1)  What does a campanologist do?

2)  How many hoops are used in a game of croquet?

3)  Which popular board game was first published by Parker Brothers in 1935 ?
4)  The Borrowdale valley, popular with walkers, lies in which English National Park?
5)  In the UK, what is the lowest grade of music exam?
6)  The "Maid of the Mist" is a tourist boat that takes sightseers to the foot of which famous North American water feature?
7)  The phrase "Trickor Treat" is associated with which night of the year?

8)  In which country is the Muirfield golf course?
9)  Tai chi originates in which country?
10) "Infinite Warfare" is the 2016 instalment of which video game series?
11) In which county is the Eden Project?
12) Wha French name is given to a restaurant's head waiter?

13) Zumba keep-fit sessions involve dance steps to what type of music?
14) in which decade did the first Center Parcs holiday village open in the UK?
15) Which piece is between a bishop and a castle at the start of a game of chess?

16) Which ship,open as a museum since 1971, is moored near Tower Bridge on the River Thames?

17) An asana is a pose in which form of execise system?

18) What is shown on a brown road sign in the UK to indicate a beach?
19) England's National Exhibition Centre lies south -east of which city?

20) Which organisaton manages the Suffolk nature reserve of Minsmere?


(Answers on "Members Page")


Adam Rippon: ‘I’m not a gay icon. I’m an icon’

Adam Rippon has denied his status as a gay icon. The Olympic bronze medal-winning figure skater had a spectacular Games on and off the ice, as he became – as he put it – “America’s sweetheart.” His medal-winning performance came in the same team event in which Eric Radford became the first ever openly gay manto win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics.

But, speaking to The Washington Post, the Team USA athlete said he did not want to just be an example to gay people, but to everyone. “I think one thing I want people to come away with from this competition is that I’m not like a gay icon and I’m not America’s gay sweetheart,” said Rippon. He explained that he looked forward to a time when athletes like he and fellow gay US athlete Gus Kenworthy were recognised for their sporting prowess alone. “You know, I think that right now, I think Gus and I are sort of pegged as ‘the gay Olympians,’ ” he said. “And I think at the end of the day, that we’re just Olympians, and I think we’re ‘gay Olympians,’ and the next gay Olympians will just be called Olympians, and I think that’s what we really hope, that it won’t be a story. It shouldn’t be a story, but right now, it is… but I hope that in 2038, that those ‘out’ athletes on the team, that nobody’s interested in that story because it’s old news and everybody is comfortable to be themselves.”

Rippon added that coming out had made him stronger – possibly even more so than his straight counterparts. “I think you spend so much time worrying about what other people think about, that you realise that you had all of this extra energy that you didn’t need to be using,” he said. “And you know, I think straight people never have this experience of coming out. It’s such a life-changing moment that you become so strong. I gained so much power and strength from that moment.”

Kenworthy, who hit the headlines for kissing his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas on live TV during the Pyeongchang Games, agreed with his teammate. The American freestyle skier said: “I agree with what he said about it being effortless, because when I was in the closet, it was so much effort to stay in the closet and constantly worrying, and fearing I was going to fall asleep before the other guys on my team and say something in my sleep, or anything. I was just, all the time, always nervous that I was going to out myself, that someone was going to find out, and it was this horrible, horrible thing. Now that I’m out, and I realise how great it is,” he continued, “and I’m just getting to enjoy my life, I feel like I just feel free and liberated and I’m competing better, interviews, anything, I just get to be myself, and it’s a strange thing to be thanked for that, but it’s also amazing.”

Rippon said: “It’s like the greatest gift I think we’ve given ourselves. In terms of it making you weak,” Kenworthy added, “I almost feel like in a lot of ways it probably makes you stronger, because you’ve had this internal battle for so much of your life.”

Rippon said he felt the same way: “I feel so much stronger since coming out. Like, now I’m the fully actualised monster I’m supposed to be,” he joked.


Gus Kenworthy and his boyfriend have rescued this puppy from a South Korean dog meat farm

Gus Kenworthy has added to his growing status as one of our favourite-ever Olympians by adopting a dog from a South Korean dog meat farm. The silver medal-winning freestyle skier had already won hearts by throwing some excellent shade at Ivanka Trump, and the Team USA athlete’s kiss with his actor boyfriend Matthew Wilkas on live TV drew acclaim and celebration from far and wide. Kenworthy also vowed to reject any invitation to visit President Trump's White House after the Games, and critisised the choice of anti-LGBT Vice President Mike Pence to lead the US delegation in Pyeongchang.

The out gay US athlete has now stood up for another cause close to his heart. Writing on Instagram, Kenworthy said: “This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visit to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea. Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don’t personally agree with it, I do agree that it’s not my place to impose western ideals on the people here. The way these animals are being treated, however, is completely inhumane and culture should never be a scapegoat for cruelty,” he added. “I was told that the dogs on this particular farm were kept in “good conditions” by comparison to other farms.”

The Olympian proceeded to describe the terrible conditions which the dogs were kept in. “The dogs here are malnourished and physically abused, crammed into tiny wire-floored pens, and exposed to the freezing winter elements and scorching summer conditions,” he wrote. “When it comes time to put one down it is done so in front of the other dogs by means of electrocution sometimes taking up to 20 agonising minutes. Despite the beliefs of some, these dogs are no different from the ones we call pets back home. Some of them were even pets at one time and were stolen or found and sold into the dog meat trade. Luckily, this particular farm (thanks to the hard work of the Humane Society International and the cooperation of a farmer who’s seen the error of his ways) is being permanently shut down and all 90 of the dogs here will be brought to the US and Canada where they’ll find their fur-ever homes.” Kenworthy added, he was set to become one of those lucky new dog owners.

“I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she’ll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she’s through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks. I cannot wait to give her the best life possible! There are still millions of dogs here in need of help though (like the Great Pyrenees in the 2nd pic who was truly the sweetest dog ever). I’m hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the US where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes!”

He ended the post with the hashtags “#dogsarefriendsnotfood” and “#adoptdontshop .


Beemo is a lucky puppy.


guskenworthy This morning Matt and I had a heart wrenching visit to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea. Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is part of Korean culture and, while I don't personally agree with it, I do agree that it's not my place to impose western ideals on the people here. The way these animals are being treated, however, is completely inhumane and culture should never be a scapegoat for cruelty. I was told that the dogs on this particular farm were kept in "good conditions" by comparison to other farms. The dogs here are malnourished and physically abused, crammed into tiny wire-floored pens, and exposed to the freezing winter elements.  -  from Gus Kenworthy's instagram


Women prefer spending time with gay men rather than straight men, study finds

Women prefer interacting with gay men rather than straight men, new research has discovered.  The study, published in the US journal Psychological Science, found that once straight women find out that a man is gay, their behaviour towards him becomes friendlier and more intimate. This was true both of women who reported their own comfort levels and those whose body language was analysed.

Eric M. Russell, who co-authored the study, explained that after the gay men came out, the women had “reduced worry about his sexual intentions”. Russell, a researcher in social psychology at the University of Texas at Arlington, has previously written for Pink News about his theory that straight women prefer being friends with gay men, rather than straight men.

Russell, who co-authored the study with William Ickes and Vivian P. Ta, told PsyPost that straight men’s over-confident approach hurt them in terms of constructing genuine relationships. “Because straight men typically over perceive women’s sexual interest, women often try to keep their ‘friendlier’ interaction behaviours in check when they are meeting men for the first time,” he said. "However, when these women discover that they are interacting with gay men, this anxiety is greatly reduced in that the women no longer feel pressured to suppress their more open and involving interaction behaviours. With gay men, women can engage more openly and intimately with them because they do not have to worry about the men having an ulterior sexual motive.”

Russell said that the difference between these friendships and those between men and women who were both straight was noticeable. He added: “Straight women and gay men likely see their friendships as safe spaces where they can have fun, be themselves, and engage in intimate conversations without fear of judgement, expectations, or one-sided sexual interest.

“This also implies that straight female-gay male friends can spend time together in ways that straight female-straight male friends may find awkward, such as going out to dance or watching a romantic comedy at home together.”

He said that this phenomenon may be one of the reasons for lower levels of homophobia among straight women than straight men. For instance, since Pew began its surveys on same-sex marriage, women have always had more favourable attitudes towards same-sex marriage than men. Russell suggested that given “women feel more comfortable with gay men due to their lack of sexual intentions, could increased comfort serve as a prejudice-reduction mechanism for women who have less positive attitudes towards homosexual individuals?”


Stonewall quits Pride in London over failure to involve black and ethnic minority communities - PinkNews Exclusive

Britain’s biggest LGBT charity has quit Pride in London and accused organisers of failing to represent non-white communities. Stonewall said the annual pride event had ignored repeated “concerns about the lack of diversity and inclusion”. Last year the organisation that runs Pride in London denied allegations from its own community advisory board that bosses refused to meet with activists from UK Black Pride.

Stonewall says it will now take a bigger role in UK Black Pride, which traditionally takes place on the same day, as it cites racism as a major ongoing problem among LGBT communities. In a statement the charity said: “We have also made the decision not to attend Pride in London this year. We know this is an event that’s important to many in our communities and very much hope to attend in future years. However last year, Pride in London’s Community Advisory Board again raised concerns about the lack of diversity and inclusion at Pride in London – particularly of black and minority ethnic communities. Pride in London rejected those concerns from the community in the strongest terms and, as yet, have failed to make any public acknowledgment that they may need to make significant changes if Pride in London is to be an event for everyone. “

The row comes after Pride in London’s Independent Community Advisory Board (CAB) tore into the organisation over its perceived failures. Organisers were accused of breaking down relationship and trust between the UK’s biggest LGBT celebration and UK Black Pride “irretrievably”.

London’s Pride in the Park was also criticised for lacking non-white speakers on panels, despite taking place nearby to the BAME LGBT event. Stonewall added that they would be willing to stay involved with Pride in London in future years – but only if they rectify perceived past errors. “We continue to be very willing to support Pride in London on this journey and recognise that they are taking some steps to increase the diversity of Pride in London and the events around it,” the charity added. We’re looking to support Prides around Britain to create events that are as inclusive as possible of all LGBT people in their communities. It is vital that organisations listen to those they represent and respond with an openness to improve and change.”


Man claims he’s unable to work because his penis is too big

A 52-year-old man has said he is unable to work due to the sheer size of his penis.  Roberto Esquivel Cabrera’s penis is allegedly a whopping 18.9 inches – roughly the same as half a metre in length.  The penis, from Mexico, is thought to be the world’s biggest.  However the considerable size of his manhood has left him unable to perform jobs, Mr Cabrera says.

“I cannot wear a uniform like anybody in the companies and also I cannot get on my knees,” he said.  “I cannot run fast and so the companies think badly of me.  They say that they will call me, but they never do.”

According to Roberto, after initially dismissing his claim, the government has now recognised him as disabled due to the extensive penis.  “Every four months they give me some economic assistance but it is not enough,” he said.  “I visit the food banks every day to take my meals at 12 ‘o clock.”  It was recently reported that he found work, however.  He’s been made an offer to appear in a YouPorn scene where doctors and nurses analize his predicament.

Real life doctors have warned the man that keeping the long penis will harm his health.  Far from being a source of pride for Mr Carbera, he has claimed its length has left him plagued with medical issues and resulted in him not being able to seek employment or provide for himself, reports TMZ.

Amid claims he was lying about the sheer size of his manhood, Mr Cabera recently underwent a medical examination and had an X-ray to prove that he was telling the truth.  Despite this, doctors are said to claiming that the actual penis is only 6 inches long and that the rest is in fact just excess skin.  In Mexican culture a large penis is associated with masculinity, and doctors say Mr Carbera worked hard to stretch the length of his penis – by the foreskin – to have one bigger than any other.  The wannabe record holder remains adamant that, whatever the deal, his penis is the world’s biggest: “Look where it is, it goes far below the knees”, he said.  Prior to his claim to having the longest penis in the world it is believed America Johan Falcon held the record – measuring up at 13.38 inches.


Scientists name moth with golden hair and a tiny penis after Trump

Scientists have discovered a new type of moth, notable by its golden hair and remarkably tiny penis.  The new found creature comes with a head of bright yellow scales, which the moth develops in adulthood, described as orange-yellow in colouration.  Its body is white and the wings are generally brown or greyish.  One of its most identifiable features, though, is its very small genitalia.  Evolutionary biologist Vazrick Nazari said the creature’s genitals are “comparatively smaller” than that of the Neopalpa neonata, its close relative.  Naturally Mr Nazari sought to name it after the president elect.


It’s to now be known as Neopalpa donaldtrumpi.  Or just “donaldtrumpi” for short,  and if you want to find a donaldtrumpi, well it lives in Mexico, or you can find some in California.  Let’s hope that wall doesn’t keep all the donaldtrumpi out.  Nazari told Live Science: “I hope that the president will make conservation of such fragile ecosystems in the U.S. his top priority.  “These ecosystems still contain many undiscovered and undescribed species, and deserve to be protected for future generations.”

Donald Trump became occupant of the White House at 12PM Friday 20 January 2017.


Gatwick opens world’s first airport gin distillery

Gatwick has opened the world’s first airport gin distillery in its North Terminal. Travellers can see The Nicholas Culpeper London Dry Gin being made in the three-metre-by-four-metre landside distillery before enjoying a tipple in its namesake bar.  They can also buy a bottle of the gin, made with lemongrass, cassia bark, cloves, cardamom and Angelica root, for £20 — but as it is 700ml, it cannot be taken on to flights.  Instead, passengers must pick it up on their way back from holiday using the airport’s Collect on Return service. Master of gin Matt Servini, who created the recipes, said: “The gin is far punchier and interesting than a lot of other premium gins… It’s been great overseeing this project — I felt like a mad scientist or Willy Wonka.”

The gin, which will be made daily in batches of 12 litres, costs £3.95 for a single or £5.95 for a double plus Fever Tree tonic for £1.75 at the new Nicholas Culpeper bar, named after the 17th-century herbalist and botanist.


Gay Monopoly is the best board game you never knew existed

A gay version of Monopoly was created in the 1980s – and we wish it were still a thing.  West Hollywood’s Fire Island Games was apparently responsible for the very unofficial gay version of the Parker Bros classic.  It comes circa 1983 (when Ronald Reagan was busy suppressing the AIDS epidemic and Margaret Thatcher was hard at work on Section 28) – and it’s possibly one of the best queerifications of all time.  The rigid straight-edges of the hetero Monopoly board were converted into a giant circle filled with gay landmarks. The policeman sending you to jail is replaced by a homophobic preacher sending you to ‘straight city’.  Among the destinations up for sale are Castro Street, Provincetown and our favourite: Oscar Wilde’s Waterworks.

In place of the regular Top Hat, Iron, Car and Boot sit the handcuffs, the high heel and the teddy bear – and instead of buying houses and hotels, you bought bars and bathhouses.  The box and board are peppered with homoerotic Tom of Finland artwork and filled with amazing endorsements.  One bragged: “9 out of 10 drag queens surveyed preferred GAY MONOPOLY to Brand X. The 10th one was into anything anonymous.”  And another: “In recent exit polls, almost 42% correctly identified GAY MONOPOLY as a game: 17% said they had snorted it at least once and less than 20% nodded off during questioning.”

Meanwhile, the guidebook makes clear: “Remember that nothing in the rules is sacred. They are not carved in Quiche.  “Rules are for people ‘living’ in Straight City. When you play GAY MONOPOLY be inventive like gay people always are.”

According to Board Game Geek, only a “very limited number of copies of this game” were ever made – and you will be unsurprised to hear that its creators were apparently sued into oblivion for copyright infringement.  Maybe Big Boardgame were just bitter, though: Gay Monopoly holds a geek rating of 5.4 on Board Game Geeks… which is higher than actual Monopoly on 4.4.  In 2017 we’re in a very different world… and we’d love to see Gay Monopoly make a comeback!


A very in depth and Religious Fact - "Marijuana and Marriage"

For those who haven't heard, Washington State recently passed two laws.   They legalised gay marriage and legalised marijuana. The fact that gay marriage and marijuana were legalised on the same day makes perfect Biblical sense.
Leviticus 20:13 says: "If a man lies with another man they should be stoned". Apparently we just hadn't interpreted it correctly before!


'Silver' 2p piece nets £1,350 for Poppy Appeal

A 'silver' two pence piece dropped in a charity box last year has sold for £1,350. The rare coin was found in a Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal tin in Malmesbury, Wiltshire, and was initially believed to be a fake. But when volunteers took it to a bank to be destroyed, staff suggested that they send it to the Royal Mint - which identified it as a rare coin made in error.
A nickel-plated steel blank, which would normally be used to make a 10p piece, somehow ended up being struck between 2p dies. The coin has now been sold to The Westminster Collection, a company which specialises in buying and selling collectable coins and stamps. The coin isn't completely unique. Two years ago, a similar silver 2p piece was sold for almost £1,400 by a former petrol station owner who'd found it in a roll of coins from the bank back in 1988.
And last summer, another charity benefited from the proceeds of a similar coin. That, too appeared in a collecting tin - in this case for the Royal Berkshire Hospital charity. When it was spotted by volunteer Becky Jennings, she put it up for sale on eBay - and netted more than £800 for the charity.
While the odds of your discovering a silver 2p piece are slim, there are plenty of other rare coins in circulation that can go for many times their face value. The Royal Mint recommends keeping your eyes peeled for 50p coins issued in 2009 to mark the 250th anniversary of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew. Only 210,000 were made, and they've sold for as much as £310.
The second rarest coin design in circulation is the 2002 Commonwealth Games £2 with a Northern Ireland flag, of which only 485,000 were made. Third, fourth and fifth are the 2002 £2 coins featuring the Welsh, English and Scottish flags respectively. The rarest £1 coin is the 2011 Edinburgh £1, of which 935,000 were made.


Could your small change be worth a fortune?

A special 50p piece featuring Kew Gardens is now changing hands for £24 as collectors try to snap them up.  The Royal Mint manufactured just 210,000 of the commemorative 50p coins to mark the 250th anniversary of the Royal Botanical Gardens in 2011.  That is compared with 22.7million made featuring the Royal Arms in 2008 and 7.5million produced with a Girl guiding design in 2010.  Experts estimated one in 300 people currently have a Kew Gardens 50p, but they are expected to disappear quickly into private collections now the Royal Mint has declared the coin as the rarest in general circulation.
And it's not the only common coin to be worth far more than its face value…

Dateless 20p piece - £100

When the Royal Mint redesigned the 20p piece in 2008 it decided to switch the date from the back of the coin to the front.  However, an error at the Mint mismatched the old and new designs and between 50,000 and 200,000 coins were produced with no date on and put into circulation before the mistake was spotted.  They now sell for up to £100 for a coin in mint condition.

London Olympic 50p coin - £3,000

There were 29 different designs released to celebrate the 2012 Olympic Games, with some produced in smaller numbers than others.  A full set normally commands around £35 while some of the more desirable or rare designs such as football, wheelchair rugby, wrestling and tennis can command £3 or £4.  However the real prize find is the original aquatic coin, which shows water passing directly over the swimmer's face.  Just 600 were released before the designed was altered to show a clearly visible face and one of the original coins was recently listed on eBay for £3,000.

1983 ‘New Pence’ 2p coin - £650

After British currency went decimal in 1971, all 2p coins had ‘New Pence’ on the reverse until 1981. The Royal Mint decided to replace ‘New Pence” with ‘Two Pence’ in 1982. However, in 1983 the Mint accidentally produced a small number that bore the old inscription ‘New Pence’ . These went into special collectors sets, but if you do find one that made its way into circulation it could be worth up to £650.
Guy Fawkes £2 coin - £16
The Royal Mint regularly releases £2 coins with different designs and inscriptions on the edging. However, that means mistakes sometimes creep in. The Guy Fawkes coin was released in 2005 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the gun powder plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament. On some of the coins released into circulation the inscription read “Remember, Remember the Fifth of November instead of “Remember, Remember”. Those coins usually sell for around £16 on eBay.
Charles Dickens £2 coin - £8
In 2012 the Mint released a £2 coin to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Dickens. The detailed reverse profile feature the names of the author’s books. Only 20,000 coins were minted, making it a collectable coin worth up to four times its face value.
The EC commemorative 50p coin - £20
In 1992 and 1993 the Mint issue a commemorative coin to celebrate the British presidency of the council of Europe. Just 109,000 coins were issued, compared to the usual 5-12million, making it collectable. The coins are no longer in circulation because the 50p piece was reduced in size in 1997, but if you have one in your penny jar at home it could be worth as much as £20.
Mary Rose and King James Bible £2 coins - £6
Both designs were released by the Royal Mint in 2011 in limited editions of 20,000 each to mark the 500th anniversary of the Mary Rose and the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible. Both coins are already becoming collectable due to the small numbers and reach double to triple their face value.


Best one-liners form Liberace

(Responding to a negative review of one of his performances): Your review hurt me! I cried all the way to the bank!

Too many young performers have forgotten that the most important part of show business is not the second word, it's the first. Without the show there's no business.

(Commenting on a famous quote of his): You know that bank I cried all the way to? I bought it!

[From his 1973 autobiography]: Youthfulness, I guess, will always remain the thing that fans want to see in their favorite performers. They don't like to see them grow old. Possibly because it reminds them that the same thing is happening to them.

(Spoken on stage): I didn't get dressed like this to go unnoticed.

[on playing Radio City Music Hall in the Easter show]: You can have either the Resurrection or you can have Liberace. But you can't have both.

[When asked how he could play the piano while wearing so many rings]: Very well, thank you.

What's better than roses on your piano? Tulips on your organ.

At the 1982 Academy Awards: I made my greatest contribution to motion pictures years ago. I stopped making them.

[in 1959, he won a libel case against the London "Daily Mirror" tabloid. What did he do with his damages?] I cried all the way to the bank!

Gee, you've been such a wonderful audience that I don't like to take your money. But I will!

Of course, I couldn't go out in the street in clothes like this, I'd get picked up. Come to think of it, it might be fun.

The difference between men and boys is the price of their toys.

[to his manager Seymour Heller in late 1986] If my fans or the public ever found out that I'm gay or that I have AIDS... that's all they'll ever remember about me.

I've done my part for motion pictures. I've stopped making them.


Rainbow Pepper Couscous


1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 large clove garlic, minced

1 large shallot or 1/2 small red onion, minced

3 medium red, yellow, green or orange peppers or a mix, finely diced

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh oregano

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2/3 cup whole wheat couscous

Lemon wedges, for serving



Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat; add the garlic and shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add 2/3 cup water, the bell peppers, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste, bring to a boil over high heat and cook until the peppers just begin to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the couscous, immediately cover and remove from the heat. Let stand, covered, until the liquid is absorbed and the couscous is tender, about 7 minutes.

Transfer to a platter or large bowl and serve with lemon wedges for squeezing.



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