A BOOK TO CELEBRATE

I read a rich variety of books. One I bowled through recently was now 65 year old San Francisco poetess Kim Addonizio’s “Bukowski In A Sundress”.

I’m not a Bukowski fan as this uniquely American genre always strikes me as trying too hard to say aren’t I quite a lad?

That certainly applied to Addonizio’s book which is essentially a lively memoir. Its two underlying themes are first a relentless pursuit of sexual partners and second, of greater interest, despite numerous awards and fellowships, the travails of keeping her head above water financially. The accounts of travelling to small dreary mid-West universities for the fees are amusing.

Anyway, by an amazing co-incidence, from the ever mounting to-be-read pile, the next book I picked up was 93 year old Welsh writer Jan Morris’s “Thinking Again”, this a diary of the past year. What a contrast? But first, if you don’t already know, Jan began life as James and soon made a name as a respected travel writer and historian.

James duly married and had five children until at the age of 46, back in 1972 suddenly decided he wasn’t a bloke, had the chop, pills and whatever and became a woman.

In a recent full page interview in the Weekend Financial Times Jan observed she had just passed the anniversary of now (by a year) living more as a woman than a man.

Asked about her inner feelings Jan made a surprising confession, namely that she feels equally a man as much as a woman.

While all of this is mildly interesting there’s another reason for raising it.

We’re living in incredibly trying times.

Reading “Thinking Again” I found incredibly therapeutic.

Jan lives with her long time partner Elizabeth, now in the early stages of dementia. Her one to one and a half pages daily diary entries, commenting on absolutely everything, from her delight in the minutiae of life in a remote Welsh village, to her love of New York, to her joy in her surroundings, and perhaps most of all, with a long and richly experienced life behind her, and the wisdom of age, of her abiding respect for kindness.

I strongly recommend this easily read book, if, as I alluded to, in these alarming times of the virus, Trump, looming economic devastation and so much more relentless bad news, you feel like a balancing input on the positive side. It will cheer you up, trust me.

11 Comments

Wry smile , Bob mentioned that word that sends his followers into apoplectic fits of rage , namely , ” kindness ” .

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Duly noted.

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I’m reading Oliver Stone’s memoir “Chasing the Light” (2020) which is a fascinating account of his life and film-making career up to the end of the 1980s. The added bonus is that his parents are as remarkable as he is. https://www.amazon.com.au/Chasing-Light-Fought-Hollywood-Platoon/dp/B086R4R5WW

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I cannot find any of your books to buy online apart from no punches pulled. Would love to read more. Where can I buy online ?

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    Good point Dick..I might also add that the best book Bob ever wrote “Jones on Property” is now only to be found, in jumbles sales, charity shops and the like.

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Thank you Sir Bob. I will indeed follow your advice. Regards.

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Bob, I note you use the words “looming economic devastation” in your last sentence. Along with you and every economist who the media gave coverage to, said house prices would drop. I never thought they would and I believe they still will not decrease when the wage subsidy and house interest rate deferment period ends.

Everyone appears to link recession with a drop in house prices without giving any further thought to the calculation between median household income, average house price and interest rate. Some restaurants are up 30% in turnover and cafes up 20% from the same quarter last year.

We’ll see who made the correct prediction in the months to come.

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    Adrian the equation is a very simple one. Rising unemployment always has a devastating effect on the housing market. No ifs, no buts… and the reasons are pretty plain. When you lose your job you can’t pay your mortgage no matter how hard you try.

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Thanks Bob. Have purchased both from Amazon and keen to read them.

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The breadth of your readings impresses me Sir Bob. I do get the feeling though that you have narrow views on climate change/global warming. You appear to accept the approaches of the mendacious (in my terms meaning lying untruthful ba*****ds) scientists whose only aim is to retain funding. Try reading Apocalypse Never and False Alarm – both available as best sellers on Amazon at a very good price.

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