Being at home; Opinions

Well, it looks like last weekend was the last time in Carrara until next spring/summer :-(

This weekend, if the weather forecast had been good, we were going to go down but the forecast strongly suggests that it will rain all day on Sunday so we’ve decided not to go. Instead it will be our first weekend in Milan for ages.

To be honest, I am quite looking forward to it. There are things that I haven’t done at home that, in theory, I can do this weekend. Bits of sorting out, etc.

I say “in theory” because, normally this would be true except that this weekend, F has someone staying at his flat and so he will be with me, in my flat, ALL weekend. It may not stop me doing everything but it will be a hindrance. Also, I won’t be able to start watching things I have been “saving up”. Things that I wouldn’t watch with him (i.e. films in English; films of a genre that I know he doesn’t like, etc.)

Among these things is Game of Thrones. Someone told me that, having watched the first episode, they were hooked and told me to watch the first one and I would understand. So I did. And I don’t. However, that hasn’t stopped me watching the second and third episodes. And I shall be watching the rest of the first series but after that, I’m not sure.

You see, I’m not convinced that it is really good. So, why am I watching it still, you may ask? Well, because I have hardly watched anything “English” since the spring – discounting short clips or YouTube videos and, after such a long time (a little like the books this summer, I guess) I’m kinda thirsty for hearing the English spoken word and so, almost anything goes.

So, I’m not sure if it’s my thirst for English driving my desire or if it’s really good. I know that, were I still in England, I would have watched the (first) series but here, as it’s more difficult for me to watch English stuff, I tend to be more discerning since it takes time to get hold of stuff and it costs.

Of course, when I say “discerning” this is not strictly true. I did, over the last few weeks watch the series called Episodes. Again this was a recommendation. It was OK. It’s a sitcom. Sitcoms are OK. They are not WOW!

I suppose that what I’m saying is that, in the UK, I would plonk myself in front of the TV and watch something. Anything. Every evening. Flicking through the channels until settling on something even if it was only the least-worst thing on at that moment. Some things were, of course, genuinely good. A couple of things that spring to mind are Fawlty Towers and The Sopranos. I did get Broadchurch (TV series) and, have to say that I really did enjoy that.

I realise that I’m a long way behind with Game of Thrones but, for me, that’s OK. Since I don’t have to wait for a whole week until the next episode, I can catch up not having “other programs” in the way.

Anyway, my suggesting that Game of Thrones may not be the most-wonderful-thing-to-have-hit-the-small-screen-since-the-last-most-wonderful-thing may cause some people to be upset. And can I say that I’m genuinely sorry about that. But it is, I would like to say, only MY OPINION.

In the same way that, in my opinion, authors who are gay and write about gay things don’t write good books. Of course, I haven’t read every gay author so I may be wrong. it is from my experience. The gay books by gay authors that I HAVE read aren’t really all they’re cracked up to be. I’m not saying they’re not good writers. It’s just that the books don’t say anything to me – they don’t bear any relationship to the reality of my life and, so, are unreal. I know, I know. When I can read books that are obviously fiction (SF, for example) – but those books aren’t pretending to be about real life. Books about gay people, for me, should have some elements that I can relate to. So far, they don’t. And so, in my limited experience, gay books written by gay authors are “no good”.

Which leads me onto the current story about some almost unknown author who has, apparently, made an inference that books by women, homosexuals and Chinese people are not good.

Except, he didn’t really say that. What he said was (and I paraphrase) that he hasn’t read many books by these authors that he feels passionate enough about to teach them and that, the only books he can be passionate enough about to teach are, in the main, by white, middle-class, middle-aged men.

Now there’s a whole storm brewed up here and on Twitter about him.

Which is a shame as he was asked for his opinion and he gave it. Whereas I may or may not like the man in person, his choice of reading material for his courses are entirely his concern. He may, in the opinion of many it seems, be a self-righteous prick and worse but I’m guessing he’s good at his job and, out of the hundreds of thousands or, maybe, hundreds of millions, of books to choose, he has chosen particular ones. to be pilloried for stating his opinion is a bit much. But this is the world we have created for ourselves, I guess.

Anyway, a good weekend to all and see you on the other side :-D

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