Weekend Reading

Reading time: 4 mins
Smurfette’s Roots When we were kids, my brother collected plastic Smurf figurines. While they were all fundamentally the same (blue body, white pants and white hat, except for Papa Smurf, who sported a red hat and white beard), each had different accessories based on their archetypal traits. I collected these too, in fact, in my younger rebellious days, I think I shop-lifted Papa Smurf! Survival of the Friendliest Violence has been the sire of all the world’s values,” wrote poet Robinson Jeffers in 1940. “What but the wolf’s tooth whittled so fine the fleet limbs of the antelope? What but fear winged the birds, and hunger jeweled with such eyes the great goshawk’s head?” It’s nice to be nice! TV show contestants …

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Tick Tock

Reading time: 3 mins
Tick tock I have a clock in every room. Apparently this is a bit weird, at least according to my colleagues at work. I’m not sure exactly when it became weird though; I don’t think it was mentioning the fact I have a clock in the living room, or the one in the bedroom, but when I said there was a clock in the bathroom, that’s when the puzzled looks appeared and the questions started. “You have a clock in the bathroom? Are you timing how long it takes to pee?” “…. you have a clock in … what?” “Is it for a time and motion study of your bathroom habits?” “That’s just weird” For the record, the reason I …

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Laugh like no-one is listening

Reading time: 3 mins
The older I get the fewer fucks I give. I know I will be whatever old man I end up being, but part of me hopes I’ll be an eccentric. Another part of me thinks I’ll just be a bit grumpy, and yet another part of me hopes I’ll expand my tendency towards silliness. This may mean that the little moments of madness that pepper my day, which currently stay in my head or the confines of my home, will be let loose on the poor unsuspecting people of Glasgow. I do like being silly. Two lions are walking down Oxford Street, one turns to the other and says “Quiet, isn’t it”. The tendency to break into song about random …

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Weekend Reading

Reading time: 5 mins
Falling in Love with Words: The Secret Life of a Lexicographer We’re proud to feature “Hrafnkell,” the first chapter of Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries, by Kory Stamper. We are in an uncomfortably small conference room. Words are such wonderful, powerful, beautiful things, this sound like a joyous celebration of a book. The Enduring, Anxious Appeal of Gray Looking back, I should have realized it sooner, this problem that I have. The only excuse I can give is that introspection often takes time, and it’s only slowly that one recognizes an obsession, though signs of it may appear everywhere. No. NOT 50 bloody shades. Reading this I realise that I have been fighting this too, largely by …

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Fast Food

Reading time: 2 mins
OK, confession time. I have a go to, super quick meal that I eat about once a month. It’s not the healthiest, but it’s not bad for you*, and it can be ready in a few mins (depending on how long your kettle takes to boil). Gosh, I feel quite nervous about this, this is one of my darkest held secrets, and I’m about to share it with the world. Please try not to judge me, or at the very least, don’t be nasty about it. Right, here it goes. Tuna, Smash, and baked beans (with butter/salt to taste). It’s perfect if I’ve had a long shitty day and I can’t even be bothered flinging something in the oven, but …

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3 Star or bust

Reading time: 4 mins
Do you believe everything you read? Are you happy to take the opinion of the clearly ill-informed over those who weigh their words and provide evidence both for and against what they are offering? Don’t worry, this isn’t about Trump. I’ll admit that I like to have a sense of whether something is good or bad before trying it and find myself reading reviews on purchases, bars, restaurants, books, movies and, well, pretty much anything I consume or use. It wasn’t something I really considered noteworthy until a friend of mine commented that she always asks me what I think of something because she knows I’ll have researched the shit out of it (she’s classy with words that way). It …

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Weekend Reading

Reading time: 3 mins
How I Came to the Church of Rock and Roll True, in junior high I sang along to John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High” and knew every word on the “A Star Is Born” soundtrack. I was lucky, being introduced to Queen at an early age. Their album “Jazz” still resonates. “Tyler, you’re fucking Marla”: A perspective on Fight Club to piss off its devotees Content note: there’s a lot of discussion of sex and violence in this post. Also, spoilers for Fight Club, if somehow you’ve made it without watching it or knowing “the twist” for almost twenty years. A fav movie of mine, and a fav type of article. Take a movie and offer a different perspective. I’m gonna …

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10 weeks

Reading time: 2 mins
The boot camp I recently signed up for includes a session on nutrition to make sure we are eating properly. The sessions is more about having energy to do the boot camp activities than to prescribe a diet, but I’m already thinking that I should also use it to hack my eating habits. I don’t treat my body well and it no longer feels like it is indestructible, the myriad of little aches and pains I notice throughout the day a sure sign I need to be a bit smarter, both with what I do with my body and what I put in it (FNAR!). Part of this is education. I’ve a reasonable grasp on the basics of good nutrition …

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Levengrove Park

Reading time: 2 mins
Last Sunday I had to pop in to my parents place to pick something up and, as I was down that way, I decided to go for a drive. I had no destination in mind but had all afternoon to kill and made my decisions as they came to me. So it was I came to find myself at Levengrove Park, the memories flooded back as I parked the car… … bumping over the low kerb onto the pavement, my hand poised on the seat belt release in anticipation. As the car eases to a stop, I push the latch to freedom. I reach over and do the same for my sister and we clamber out. Behind us, Sintra paces …

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Weekend Reading

Reading time: 4 mins
Still managing to, mostly, avoid Trump links here. Alas not completely but I’m doing my best to read more things outside of that horror show (whilst following along as best I can in the news). Bird Man Noah Strycker spotted the first bird before I made it from the parked car to the edge of the marsh. “It’s a rough-legged hawk,” he said when I caught up to him, gesturing for me to peer through his long, 60-power Swarovski scope. I do love tales about dedication, no matter the field. David Letterman on Life After TV, Late Night Today, and the Man He Calls Trumpy Since retiring after 33 years on the late night television, David Letterman has kept a …

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