"Alone in the Night as the Daylight Brings a Cool Empty Silence" Edition
Sadly, I have left England. Happily, I am in Poland. Does that make sense? I think so. One can love the autumn and the summer at the same time.
I also wrote for my paying Substack subscribers about my birthplace, Bath.
Men and anorexia. Elamin Abdelmahmoud writes for BuzzFeed about men and eating disorders. I think articles like this, for all their virtues, are slightly reductionist in their focus on “body image”. Aesthetic concerns, and their related neuroses, are certainly related to eating disorders. Still, the paradoxical fixation self-control that exists within anorexic people transcends it. It is not just about shaping one's body. It is about mastering oneself. (I wrote about my experiences with anorexia here.)
The spy in the bag. The Sunday Times reports on the strange death of Gareth Williams, an MI6 employee who was found dead in a North Face holdall in 2010. The death was dismissed as a private BDSM-related accident but I always thought it was suspicious. His phone had apparently been wiped. The heating had been turned up, even though it was August, which had accelerated the decomposition of the corpse. Now there are calls for a new inquiry. I will follow them with interest - though I suppose one has to do at least a little to suppress that part of oneself that treats real deaths as if they are the plots of an especially sophisticated murder mystery.
Epic handshake watch. Geoff Shullenberger cleverly compares Catholic integralism to left-wing Marcusian “repressive tolerance”. If nothing else, he reveals how rare it is for ideologies to actually uphold “tolerance”, in a neutral sense, as a value.
Tattletales. Glenn Greenwald assaults, in his battering ram style, the small-minded censoriousness of too many left-wing journalists.
The quiet dictator. Helen Andrews reviews a book about the unfussily autocratic Antonio de Oliveira Salazar.
Raw eggs and introversion. A very entertaining piece about “INTJ Lifters” in Countere magazine, which emphasises, amusingly and self-awarely, how apparently absurd subcultures have their own high-strung internal logic.
A poem for my mum's funeral.
Have a lovely week,