The complete short stories of CK Stead in book form, as pictured above. One of these contains some of the others, mysteriously altered: temperatures have changed, as has a character’s wife’s name. What is the author playing at? Some of this will be revealed soon in the Listener.
Bereavement bling is a thing, reports Anne Jolis in the Spectator. Also, how to preserve your loved one’s tattoos when they die. Go on, you know you want to.
In the same issue Matthew Parris, on tour touting his new book Scorn about abuse and invective, makes a case for Twitter being the new Shakespeare and that we live in a golden age of swearing. He persuasively sets Shakespeare’s “whey-faced loon”, “obscene, greasy tallow-catch”, “You mad mustachio purple-hued maltworns!”, “you whoreson upright rabbit!” and more alongside responses to this tweet by Michael Gove, “We need to renegotiate a new relationship with Europe, based on free trade and friendly cooperation.” A twitterstorm ensued:
you are one confused bag of mince.
you boil-in-the-bag rent-a-clown.
you reprehensible spam-faced tool bag!
you back-stabbing cockwomble.
you haunted pork mannequin.
Parris reports that when he read from the book on tour, “cockwomble” did not go down well in the rural Midlands, whereas the other c— word was fine in Chester.
Mick Hartley has three great photos of the airship Hindenburg: one shows its construction in 1932, one shows it in flight over New York in 1937, and one shows it crashing later that day in New Jersey: 36 people died, and that was the end of airships.
So here are the Pretty Things in 1967 with “Balloon Burning”, which is about that disaster, from their masterpiece SF Sorrow, the first rock opera, recorded at Abbey Road at the same time the Beatles were making Sgt Pepper and Pink Floyd Piper at the Gates of Dawn. This rocks much harder than either: