The Diary

Glad to get on his bikes

November 5, 2015

The founder of a project that fixes old bikes and gives them to refugees has been named Lloyds Bank Social Entrepeneur of the Year.

Former Habonim social action worker Jem Stein, 27, beat five finalists to win the £10,000 prize for the Bike Project.

Since starting the project three years ago, Mr Stein has supplied transport to more than a thousand refugees.

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Domestic drama in Edgware

November 5, 2015

When Jane Myers enjoyed a night of theatre with family and friends, the venue was unusual - her house.

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Nigella's lapse in taste

November 5, 2015

We may forgive Nigella Lawson her TV pork and prawns but how will she live this down? In an Evening Standard interview, ex-MP George Galloway explained that he was able to join the Groucho Club in London - usually barred to politicians - because the membership secretaries were friends: Nigella and her late husband (JC columnist) John Diamond.

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From blue movies to blue stars

October 29, 2015

Don't be surprised if a rabbi pops up in former porn star Jenna Jameson's next screen outing.

The American celebrity is reported by Israeli media to be planning a reality TV series as she goes through a conversion to Judaism.

In recent weeks, Ms Jameson, who is engaged to Californian-based Israeli diamond dealer Lior Bitton, has been posting messages of support for Israel on social media (in

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Pulling michael McIntyre's leg

October 29, 2015

You may wonder why Claire Ruback of Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, is tugging at the trouser leg of Michael McIntyre (right).

During one of his recent live shows at Wembley, the comedian was telling a story about his calf muscles and rolled up his trousers to demonstrate.

But when it came to rolling them down again, the trousers refused to budge.

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It's cool to text about shul

October 29, 2015

Apple's new range of emojis - the picture language for mobile phones - includes an image for a synagogue. So now you can send a message - "Having a great time in shul" - but not on Shabbat,of course.

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If you have faith in food...

October 29, 2015

Here's a chance to appear on TV and get to eat as well. London-based production company Superplex Pictures want to find someone from the Jewish community for a planned series, Food & Faith.

Their choice would be a person "involved with food… who may have stories to tell about recipes which relate directly to events in their lives and their beliefs".

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Mismatched dating

October 29, 2015

JC editor Stephen Pollard was puzzled to receive an invitation through the post to get in touch with Simantov International.

You'd think that a company that bills itself as the "leading Jewish name in Jewish matchmaking" might have found out first that someone was married with children.

Or is Simantov trying to encourage a new trend in Jewish dating - polygamy?

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Dramatic tip

By Simon Rocker, October 22, 2015

Steve Rich, the founder of Theatremonkey website, was giving tips to Time Out readers about how to find tickets for popular London theatre shows. "The queues are always shorter on rainy days or at certain times of the year," he noted - "early September, early January and major Jewish holidays."

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Pricey politics

By Simon Rocker, October 22, 2015

The other day, I found an edition of one of Lord Sacks's many books, The Politics of Hope, on Amazon, which originally appeared in 1997. "Brand new, unread copy in perfect condition", the website said - and yours for just £999.11 (plus £2.80 for delivery). You've definitely got to believe in the politics of hope if you're asking that.

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