Monday, June 7, 2010

Books and Birthday Blatherings.

This post is arranged in order of importance, so first, here is my birthday wishlist. (Why is this up here? Why not?)


The Sandman novels

(and the rest, sorted by author)

Kurt Vonnegut -

Breakfast of Champions (because I think it'd be nice to compare with Joseph Heller's Something Happened)
Slaughterhouse Five
Mother Night.

Stephen Fry -

Moab is my Washpot,
The Hippopotamus
Making History

Terry Pratchett

it's alllll good.

J G Ballard -


[Music] or the players thereof)

Any good mp3 player of a capacity between 8 and 16GB (I'm a little iffy about iPods)


I want to read the Time Traveler's Wife; it has been variously described to me as "sooo romantic!" and "hardcore sci fi", but has universally been praised to the skies. This is suspect, and I intend to make investigations.

In other news, I am halfway through Amartya Sen's The Idea of Justice , which is a confident, lucid, unceasingly rational series of arguments towards a practical end. Individual sentences are constructed with a spare elegance that is wonderfully appealing to the eye, not least the mind. I am tempted to re-read some paragraphs simply because of the beautiful relentlessness with which they march to a conclusion. I read The Argumentative Indian just prior to this, and it's a nice amousebouche before the meaty stuff.

I gave Haruki Murakami a shot and I know I won't be going back there; minimalism can be taken too far for too long and I was bored to distraction. I read Satyajit Ray's The Chess Players, and I think this is one of those few stories that the film told better. Either that or it was written in Bengali and I have a crappy translation, and if this true, I deserve it for expecting great things from a copy sold for fifteen bucks.

In still other news, I wish to rhapsodise - Worli Seaface on a cloudy monsoon afternoon. The pillion seat on a bike makes an excellent vantage point, especially if said bike is moving at what feels like 80kmph. Language cannot describe that explosion of joy, so I ask instead that you look up and shut your eyes,and imagine the golden lightness you see as the sun shines down upon them. And then I ask that you draw breath in, and you imagine the taste of salt on your tongue, and the warm, sticky wind whipping your hair about your face and condensing it into stiff curly clumps encrusted with salt and sand; I ask this of you, and I ask you to open your eyes, and if you are not smiling, you have surrendered your humanity somewhere along the way, and I am sorry for you.

I admit that litchis are perhaps not all bad. It is a grudging admission. I have the folks at Naturals to credit for this unexpected change of(in?) opinion.



PS - Who will watch Rajneeti with me? On a weekday, evening show?

PPS - Mr S Bhehnchod and Miss A G Glass are highly recommended as companions of a Saturday night. Thank you for the excellent weekend!

PPPS - I am not going to thank Suk and Divi because nothing less was expected of them ;)