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Life's hard and then you die

PUBLISHED: 13:00 14 May 2007 | UPDATED: 08:53 21 July 2010

onstage at the Andre Agassi's 10th Grand Slam for Children press conference at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on October 1, 2005 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

onstage at the Andre Agassi's 10th Grand Slam for Children press conference at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on October 1, 2005 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

2005 Getty Images

ONE bright spark of a government adviser has said that schools should give lessons on how to cope with life and be happy. Professor Lord Richard Layard, from the London School of Economics or mayor of the Munchkin City in the magical land of Oz...

ONE bright spark of a government adviser has said that schools should give lessons on how to cope with life and be happy.

Professor Lord Richard Layard, from the London School of Economics or mayor of the Munchkin City in the magical land of Oz, depending on your level of cynicism, believes the central purpose of schools should be to teach the secrets of happiness.

He is calling for a new generation of teachers specialising in what is known as "emotional intelligence".

If teachers knew the answer to that little quandary, do you think they would still be teaching?

And don't parents have some responsibility here, too?

Hell, if any of us knew the secret of coping with life and being happy, we could get on with trying to have a meaningful existence instead of spending decades struggling to just stay afloat, or watching our lives play out a goal-less draw as we lie on a trolley in a hospital corridor for days before finally popping our clogs, if we're lucky.

John Lennon once said that life is what happens while you're trying to make plans and for all but a very fortunate few that really is society in a nutshell.

Life for many of us is a stressful experience of constantly being on the way to somewhere else and having to rush to be there on time.

It's only when it's too late that most of us can look back on a lifetime of missed opportunities, cul de sacs and wrong turns. All that's left is the fear of what lies beyond.

We work and we die. The cycle is endless and it will stay that way because it's what makes the world go round, like worker bees in a hive.

Except at least bees have stings.

Money talks - cash sings

IS anyone worth paying £500 a ticket to see in concert?

Barbra Streisand is set to perform live for the first time in years and will play her first European dates, including the UK. Ticket prices are astronomical even before the touts and ebay chancers get in on the act.

In terms of status, she's right up there with Sinatra, Garland and Elvis and I'm sure there are plenty of people (most of them gay) who will be more than happy to raid their handbags and part with that sort of cash to see their idol (or is that icon?) giving it some nasal New York State Of Mind welly.

But £500? I wouldn't pay that to see a resurrected John Lennon, Frank Zappa, Lowell George, Otis Redding, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, John Bonham supergroup.

Well come to think of it...

Elevated status

THE U2 lyric, "Been living like a mole", from their song Elevation was named as the worst line ever in a radio poll.

Obviously, they had never listened to Toto's 1982 hit, Africa, which has the tongue-twistingly excrutiating line: "I know that I must do what's right sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti."

Now you would have to go a long way (further even than Africa) to find a lyric as bad as that.

Whodunnit poser

LIVERPOOL goalkeeping hero Pepe Reina's house was burgled as he was helping his team win a place in the European Cup final.

Chelsea's Frank Lampard is not under suspicion although he is unable to account for his whereabouts between 7.30pm and 10pm on the night in question.

I'd also be interested to see how many footballers' houses were done over during the last World Cup because nobody knew where he was then either.

A video of David Hasselhoff drunk and a recording of an angry Alec Baldwin's voicemail message to his 12-year-old daughter. Why? What the hell does it have to do with anyone?

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