Mary Beard's by now famous blog A Don's Life has been running on the TLS website for nearly three years. In it she has made her name as a wickedly subversive commentator on the world in which we live. Her central themes are the classics, universities and teaching - and much else besides. What are academics for? Who was the first African Roman emperor? Looting - ancient and modern. Are modern exams easier? Keep lesbos for the lesbians. Did St Valentine exist? What made the Romans laugh? That is just a small taste of this selection (and some of the choicer responses) which will inform, occasionally provoke and cannot fail to entertain.