I love reading. Mainly books obviously, but I distinctly recall comparing the nutritional content of Kellogg’s cornflakes and Weetabix from the packets as a kid (Weetabix win by the way), so will read pretty much anything. Even fashion magazines if push comes to shove – read elsewhere on this blog. Newspapers are an exception. I’ve never really been a reader of newspapers. Despite writing and managing the sale of software to the worlds great titles for nigh on 20 years A diner from them, sure – it was a rite of passage to eat a bag of chips on ones way back from Scouts of a cold winter’s evening. (Or a warm summer’s one, but that’s somewhat less evocative don’t you think?)
Posh chips – in the Financial Times
With “scratchings” if you wanted extra cholesterol. Which we always did. (“Scratchings” are bits of batter that fall off the fish in the fryer… they’re free, and sometimes even have bits of fish in them. Hey – it was Yorkshire, and it was like a free raffle to see if you got protein with your starch and fat!) The whole thing of course just being an excuse to consume near-fatal quantities of salt and vinegar (also, you guessed it, free!). You had to be careful the malt vinegar didn’t soak through the paper and make it soggy though, or you lost your chips on the street, and the crows got them instead. The crows near us could hardly get off the ground without an extra long run-up and a tail wind. Actually, you know – this is an aberration of memory. The crows are a BC thing. As a kid in Yorkshire, it was starlings that used to do the clean up.
On reflection it’s amazing I ever made it to my 20’s and a subsequently healthier diet, let alone the dotage I now enjoy. Maybe beer dissolves cholesterol. Sign me up for that study…
An aspiring young artist went one stage further and wrapped her entire local chip shop in newspaper as a school project. Kudos! Bit of a fire hazard though, no? Just sayin’… such an Engineer.
Metro: Jade Bennett’s art project
So how did I end up at an entire chip shop wrapped in newspaper? Ah yes – the love of a good book. Though I’ve never quite understood it, I gather reading on the loo is quite common in some circles. Maybe it was the lack of heating in my formative years or something, but I’ve always subscribed to the “get in, get done, get out” philosophy myself. Never struck me as something to linger over. But I do like a languorous read at other times. In bed on a Sunday morning for example. I know folk who read in the bath, too. Again, possibly due to lack of heating in the bathroom as a kid, but baths are of the “in, done, out” category to me. Unless of course I’m pondering some great mystery in life. Like how to balance my bank account, or what new foods tasted like before we discovered chickens. However, to the best of my knowledge I’ve never felt the need to lie naked on a bed reading while some dodgy old bloke “did art”. This young lady had no such compunction it seems, and allowed Jean-Jacques Henner to paint her while she read sans vêtements. Perhaps it was a good story, and she was just a little forgetful…
Jean-Jacques Henner: La liseuse
Musée d’Orsay: Jean-Jacques Henner: La liseuse