Meanwhile things have been slow on the work front for various reasons and there's a big backlog of books to get through. Among them: Amit Chaudhuri’s The Immortals, Biman Nath’s Nothing is Blue, Rana Dasgupta’s Solo, Indu Sundaresan’s In the Convent of Little Flowers. Too many books, too little time. Through experience I’ve discovered that the thing to do is such a situation is to put all these books aside and instead direct your attention to something you definitely won’t be asked to review – like Noddy and the Magic Rubber. This is what I’ve successfully done, along with reading a randomly selected chapter of Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers (the one about how the high power distance index in countries like Korea is responsible for gruesome plane crashes because the first officer keeps nodding and smiling politely at the captain when he should be saying “You’ve missed the runway by three miles, you dolt!”).
Also, and I’m afraid I can’t provide further details, I woke yesterday morning from uneasy dreams to discover that I had mailed the following paragraph to someone who wanted a short synopsis of Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom:
A freelance photographer by day and a murderer of stockinged women by night, Mark’s modus operandi involves photographing his victims at the point of death. Soon we learn that this unusual personality trait developed because when he was a child his domineering father would torment him by dropping lizards on his bed. Not the best way to raise a child, as the grown-up Mark’s victims would no doubt agree, but then why raise a child at all? This film is the best condom ad you could hope for. Even better than Noddy and the Magic Rubber.(More tales from the crypt soon)