Matt Crawford’s Why We Drive is full of wonderful reflections, like this one:
Americans noisily claim the idea of liberty as their own, but the more you see of the world, the more comical this becomes. A Harley rider wearing the costume of rebellion swelters in a traffic jam in Virginia while an inviting yard and a half of space goes unused between lanes. The word FREEDOM is spelled out across the wings of the eagle on his vest. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, a family of four on a 50 cc motorcycle deftly weaves through the congested streets of Mumbai, a garlanded image of Ganesh (Remover of Obstacles) attached to the handlebars.
Matt’s book helps confirm me in my determination to continue to avoid air travel this year and drive my way to nirvana. Well, sort of.
Two wonderful essays on the reading of big books: Sally Rooney on reading Ulysses and Gary Saul Morson on Tolstoy’s stories and Christian faith.
Why do human beings have such a strange way of walking? (Some of us are stranger in this respect than others, if you know what I mean.)
There’s been lots going on at the old blog:
- I have declared 2023 The Year of Focal Practices
- And added my first reflection on this theme
- I re-posted my old idea for Cassiodorus College
- I returned to the question of why I still read Pauline Kael on movies — one more such reflection will come in a few days
- And the newest entry, on how I adjust my research and writing methods to the project at hand.
Here’s hoping your January is the best January that it can be!