One of the things I did was write a review for Mediated, by Thomas de Zengotita. It's in the running for the worst book I've read this year, against Martin Amis's House of Meetings. HoM might avoid the title by virtue of being readable, but Mediated has the advantage of not being a nasty rehash of vastly superior works.
Anyways. We have some downtime at the magazine this week, as everybody in Europe except me is on holiday, so hopefully I'll have the time to get out reviews of To the Castle and Back by Vaclav Havel and Wall and Piece by Banksy - thank god, both good. Writing a damning review has its charms but it also means having to pay rapt attention to a book you'd rather use as kindling.
Another of the things we did this weekend was watch a couple of episodes of Blackadder, as a girl at work loaned me the complete series. Of course my favorite season, like everyone's, is the third - featuring Hugh Laurie as the Stupid Prince Regent delivering some of the best lines in the whole production, like 'I'm as happy as a Frenchman who's just invented a pair of self-removing trousers!'
I am a big admirer of Hugh Laurie and pleased for his sake to see that he's become a superstar sex symbol with the success of House. But I fucking hate House; it represents everything I despise about the 'lather-rinse-repeat' formula of broadcast television. And I can't fully wrap my head around him getting famous for a 'drama' when he's such a brilliant comedian; A Bit of Fry and Laurie and the Jeeves series have both turned me purple with laughter.
And I really can't wrap my head around him getting to be a sex symbol as a fucking cranky American doctor in a fucking 'drama'. What the fuck. When I was a spotty teenager one of the first naughty dreams I ever had was about Hugh Laurie in his full Stupid Prince Regent mode, and the idea of his audience finding him attractive in a completely different way baffles me at a deep psycho-sexual level. I mean, check this shit out: