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Showing posts from June, 2019

The Day I Picked Up a Book Again

It is an early summer evening. The weather is musty; the parching weather of last year hasn’t arrived yet, a coal tit bleeps proudly near the window meaning that both cats must be indoors. I’m in the rocking chair in front of the lit fire, with the dog at my feet, like an image from a 1930s children story. And I am reading. I’m not reading social media. I’m not reading beer blogs. I’m not casually looking up the name of The Housemartins song I’ve had stuck in my head all day (though it was almost certainly Happy Hour.) I’m reading a book. I haven’t read a book for a long time.  Something that isn’t stressed enough about the effects of depression is the way it removes all the enjoyment in your personality. The characteristics that defined your character previously are taken from you one by one. Some are more obvious to friends and peers, usually because they involve socialising. They involve your lack of attendance at family gatherings or team sports. You

At Journey's End - I just want to drink Jarl

In my early 20s, my brother and I had a discussion about our love for a certain music genre and its changes over time. I considered the generations above us who stubbornly listened to a certain period of music, only breaking tradition for one album every couple of years. Our family home and those of relatives, only ever played radio stations dedicated to 60s and early 70s music - the music of their youth. “Do you think we’ll ever stop enjoying new music?” I asked, as we were both still in the habit of buying several new albums a month. Surely if we were going to get bored of new music it would have happened years before. This question turned out to be a curse. Almost overnight, the genre we had always enjoyed started giving radio play and credence to the slow, clunky, mumbled stylings of the likes of Drake and Future. In less than 12 months after my question, the purchasing of new music had hugely decreased. Hip Hop never recovered and, whilst there are still plenty