The pandemic was giving everybody – rich and poor, young and old – a dose of isolation. And I was a veteran of isolation. I knew things would get worse, but eventually better. I knew many people would suffer and most of their suffering would go unseen. The main thing was not to despair.
Since the protective cocoon around Harvey Weinstein started to crumble a few weeks ago I've been following the #metoo hashtag on Twitter with mixed emotions. Specifically a blend of horror, shock, disgust, bewilderment, helplessness and dismay. Some people have berated men for our deafening collective silence on the issue, but I'd argue that this is … Continue reading The Weinstein spectrum
Photo by Axel Hindemith via Wikipedia, September 2007 Theo Jansen, whose work I was lucky enough to see taking a stroll on The Hague's south beach this afternoon, has an interesting theory about the evolution of his Strandbeesten. The sight of Jansen striding up the beach, dragging his whirling plastic contraption and a swarm of curious onlookers … Continue reading Evolution and the Strandbeest
It seems ridiculous now, but there was a time when every date you went on carried the risk of the other person not showing up. In other words, you’d be stood up. Nowadays when your date doesn’t appear you summon your pocket djinn, dispatch a message demanding to know where the hell they are, and … Continue reading Chippings from the quarry #4: Stood up
It took me several years to get David Bowie. Even now I'm not sure I do. Perhaps because my teenage years in the late eighties coincided with a lean period in his career (between China Girl and Tin Machine), or because the gaudy otherworldliness of Ziggy Stardust seemed almost calculated to alienate an achingly self-conscious … Continue reading Bowie
I originally wrote this for the Open Justice UK blog, set up in February 2012 to revive the dwindling art of court reporting. It's an excellent initiative, please go and look at it. In a windowless, low-ceilinged courtroom in the basement of Glasgow Sheriff Court, a quiet experiment in justice is taking place. The drugs … Continue reading Chippings from the quarry 3: The last-chance saloon (A day at Glasgow Drugs Court)
A thing I remembered recently: I’m really bad at hand gestures. Shouldn’t do them. It’s the same with dancing. Anything to do with spontaneous body posturing is just not my field. Fortunately I realised this and acted on it before the guy sprung from the ledge.It happened like this. I was on my way to … Continue reading Chippings from the quarry #2: The railing