Two camp Englishmen re-enact a Youtube argument about One Direction.


Despite trying to stop myself, I’ve just finished reading the Salinger stories for the second time. Glorious. I’m all choked up. ‘The Ocean Full Of Bowling Balls’ is especially moving, like finding a photograph you’ve never seen before of someone who died long ago.

I’ve always found Salinger to be a magical, masterful writer. He’s absolutely effortless. Nine Stories is the most perfect collection of short stories I’ve ever read. And of course Catcher In The Rye, which unfortunately has become so passé you can’t even mention it these days without being greeted by a collective groan. I’ve noticed that Catcher only sinks its teeth into certain types of young people – disillusioned loners, nostalgic innocents. People label Catcher as a rebel’s handbook, an emo bible – but it’s actually a novel of innocence, repressed grief and gentle, uncomplicated love. It owes more to Peter Pan than James Dean.

There’s no point trying to defend the novel though, Holden’s voice irritates a lot of readers, and I think that some people are too ‘well rounded’ to be affected by Catcher in a meaningful way. But looking at some of the comments today I realise there’s a lot of snobbery about Salinger, a lot of sneering. Why? Because he wrote a very popular book? Holden, Phoebe, Esme, The Glass Family – they’re old friends to me. I love them. And I’m not ashamed! 🙂

Ah, I’d kill for a big haul of unpublished Salinger stuff to surface. Just to see.

Holy shit, three Salinger stories have been leaked! I’ve been waiting for this day since I was thirteen. I don’t know whether to gobble them all at once or read a sentence every day so I can savour…

If anyone else is interested:


A sad poem about Mercury. Well, it makes me feel sad at least.

There’s a spider on your cheek
To the right of a wrinkle.
Has it become a feature of your
Face –
Do people stare and sketch it?

What long days you keep.

I will turn my eyes on you tonight,
Because there is no romance to the burning dog
Dragged like a myth to the tune of a truck –
And no roses or violets
Will sweeten that path.

Woke up about an hour ago with this really fucked up pain, like a girdle around my chest. It’s a bit distressing. I don’t know which bottle to drink first, Pepto Bismol or Milk of Magnesia. It might be anxiety manifesting itself as a fucking pain girdle. That is SO me.

A little poem about the infinitely beautiful and hypnotic Shipping Forecast, which has kept me company through some very lonely nights, ha.

Thames, Dover, Wight,
Variable 4,

Sheets, white.

Rain good,

Dorm warm,
Radio 4: