Lunchtime reading

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As predicted I’ve finished my ‘work’ already, so I can push on to other things, which is good as they are usually the things that get dropped first.

However I’ve decided on an early lunch and a quick surf first, and I thought I would share the fruits of my labour with you:

The art of creating a legend – spotted this one Sunday then got distracted. Very interesting piece: “Does the novel have to deepen the psychology of its heroes?” As a recent starter of The Count of Monte Cristo (cast aside for a couple of much easier, beach style, novels) I will certainly be picking it up again. It also made me think of a book I read about 5 years ago: Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels. Full of wonderful prose, and phrases, it was a sumptious book to read. A harrowing, yet simple story told with loving use of language.

Karl Osama Bin Marx?. Interesting article drawing parallels between the Marxist movement and the ‘Islamist’ movements prevalent today. It offers suggestions on the future direction of the ‘war on terror’, and the only weak part was this sentence thrown in towards the end of the article: “Capitalism, too, is stronger and more humane than in the days of the robber barons and the Great Depression.” I realise he is not saying that Capitalism is humane (no journalist in their right mind would try that one), but I think it could have done with a little more justification to balance the piece. Interesting stuff though.

On a related note I also found this excellent, although long, article written by Giles Kepel: “The Trail of Political Islam“. For those of us, myself firmly included, who are not quite up-to-speed on the whole ‘Middle East thing’ I strongly suggest you take the time to read it. Interesting predictions towards the end.

Loch Lomond National Park, and the Lomond Shores centre was opened yesterday by HRH Princess Anne. Having spent a lot of my youth in the area, living only a few miles away, I guess I took a lot of it for granted. As HRH said “Those visitors who come to Scotland very soon realise that it’s pretty well as near perfect as you can get, until of course they come across the ‘x factor’, which is the midge.”.

And continuing the theme, we are headed to Skye for a long weekend soon, and I am so pleased that “Of Scotland’s thirty-four species of midges, only four or five enjoy humans and the most indulgent by far is C.impunctatus, the Highland midge”. Guess we’ll have to get the extra large can of insect repellant. Although a good substitute is to take my Mum. Anything that flies and bites seems to home in on her, leaving everyone else completely fly free.