I really dislike the Guardian, but everyone else I work with seems to love it and it's in the staff room every day. I read it in spite of myself - if you put words in front of me, I will read them. Mostly, I just get enraged by the boring rubbish spewed by Charlie Brooker and Hadley Freeman, but yesterday I actually read a really interesting article.
It was written by Deborah Orr, and though it starts out very poorly, it does have several points in it that made me think. I'm posting it here as a recommendation. Link to article.
(Also, further on in the G2 yesterday was a recipe for Marmalade, which I quite fancy making this year...possibly my favourite issue of the G2 ever.)
The best thing Ive read today is a bit from The Shock of The New by Robert Hughes. It's one of my favourite books in the house, my dad's had it as long as I remember. The book is a heavy A4-ish hardback and I have pulled it off the shelf a million times to look at the pictures and read snippets. Here is the bit I read today (it's referring to this):
"The other naif whom Surrealism especially admired was not a painter but a builder who, in the obscurity of his own country garden, created what was perhaps the most elaborate, beautiful, and mysterious "unofficial" work of art made by any nineteenth-century artist. He was Ferdinand Cheval, a postman or facteur in the village of Hauterives, about forty miles from Lyon. The Facteur Cheval (as he is usually called) had done nothing remarkable for forty-three years of his life. But one day in 1879, on his delivery round, he picked up a pebble. It was a piece of the local greyish-white molasse or tufa, gnarled and lumpy, about four inches long - his "stone of escape", as he later called it. He put it in his pocket and, from then on, began first to collect more odd-looking stones, then tiles, oyster-shells, bits of glass, wire, iron, and other junk. Back in his garden, he began to lay foundations and build walls. He was, by his own account, bored with "walking forever in the same decor"....He began to take a wheelbarrow on his rounds, collecting more and more of the bizarre stones of the region, rock-collecting by night, building in the morning and evening, delivering letters by day, and sleeping very little. This routine went of for a third of a century."
Cheval inscribed this on the palace:
FOR FORTY YEARS I DUG
TO MAKE THIS FAERY PALACE
RISE FROM THE EARTH.
FOR MY IDEA'S SAKE, MT BODY HAS CONFRONTED ALL:
TIME, RIDICULE, THE YEARS.
LIFE IS A SWIFT CHARGER
BUT MY THOUGHT WILL LIVE ON IN THIS ROCK.