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It is my considered opinion that Vladimir Putin is a shaved baboon who derives sexual pleasure from felching dead goats.

This will be the last cross-post to LJ and my loyal 0.5 readers will find all future posts on Dreamwidth.
sigmonster: Highly zoomed in portion of a Julia set (a fractal image in the complex plane). (Default)
<lj-cut text="Books>Eric Partridge, A Dictionary of Cliché Basil Thomson, Richardson’s First Case Christopher Isherwood, Mr Norris Changes Trains Amy Stewart, The Drunken Botanist Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep Simon Brett, Situation Tragedy Georgette Heyer, Envious Casca Bruno Vincent, Enid Blyton: Five Go to Brexit Island James Kenneth Galbraith, The Affluent Society Sara Pascoe, Animal Molly Thynne, The Case of Sir Adam Braid Miles Burton, Death in the Tunnel John Rowland, Calamity in Kent Norman Thelwell, Up The Garden Path</lj-cut>
sigmonster: Highly zoomed in portion of a Julia set (a fractal image in the complex plane). (Default)
Last night's falling-asleep-not-necessarily-coherent-train-of-thought (who says English isn't agglutinative?) was about the description of hedonic experience. It seems to me that there are at least two different things going on, quite apart from the objective / subjective split:

1) Describing what x is actually like. This is difficult and usually rather pointless, whether it's the sensation of dirt under your fingernails while planting out seedlings on a breezy day in spring, or fried bacon.

2) Describing x is relative terms compared to other experiences of a very similar kind. This is much easier, but is also completely dependent on a shared background of experience.

Nearly all art notes, or wine tastings, or thatre reviews, will be of the second kind, and attempting to read them as if they are of the first kind will just screw you up and make you think people are being more pretentious than they actually are. Wine reviews don't say "blackberries and coal tar" to imply you could mix blackberries and coal tar and get a similar drink, they are saying that nearly everything about the experience overlaps with other similar wines, because they're all made out of grape juice, but this particular one has a distinctive handful of flavours over and above. And if you start doing horizontal tasting of, say, a bunch of similar age, similar strength, similar grape variety wines, the tasting notes get more and more baroque because nearly all of the tastes and scents overlap and the differences that exist will be more unusual and more distinctive. (One of the secondary motivations for oddball descriptions is just to be memorable, too.)

Anyway. What do you think about as you drift off to sleep?
sigmonster: Highly zoomed in portion of a Julia set (a fractal image in the complex plane). (Default)
It's Thanksgiving! I hope you are all very grateful for my birthday (which technically is tomorrow but pfft, birthday eve still counts) (also reading wonkette is clearly very bad for prose style).

Good year for personal stuff, including an excellent trip to Orkney and to a wedding in a castle. Bit of a shit year for people dying on me, both suddenly and unexpectedly and not so suddenly and all too expectedly. As someone said on Facebook, how about you all stop fucking dying, eh?

It's also pretty much the first anniversary of renting the new! Leeds allotment. We have harvested garlic and elephant garlic and broad beans and two kinds of radishes and runner beans and french beans and mangetout and three kinds of chard and four kinds of winter squash and nasturtiums and wild rocket and mustard greens and pak choi and beetroot and spinach and swede and fennel and kale and coriander and lettuce and, inevitably and quite possibly a legal duty, courgettes.


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