READ: “… the way you make a great work of art is by imitating it, and in your failure to imitate, that is where the beauty in your work lies, and that is where genius lies.” | Reading Seven Days in the Art World by Sarah Thornton (this review of it is a bit boring. Simply clarifying a problem is hard enough work on its own without having to propose solutions to everything.) | Emma Cline reads her Paris Review story Marion / on adolescence, pen pals, and the Manson girls / hell yes I’ll be reading her book.
LOOK: Watching Australia’s The Code on BBC iPlayer! | The dirty girls. | Lena Dunham’s bookshelf. (They’re great books, okay.) | How to poach an egg. Perhaps I will be brave enough to attempt this soon. It is an idiotic personal cooking hurdle! | Pickled salmon and cucumber salad. | Almond butter blueberry cookies. | Caramel and macadamia cheesecake.
THINK: When a woman conceals the first trimester of pregnancy, who is she trying to protect? | “We need to ask, today perhaps more than ever, why men turn against women when it is their own masculinity that is threatened; why does assaulting a woman appear so often to be the best way to compensate masculine failing and distress.” | “What may seem like an agreeable quid pro quo looks different in the long run, when women age out of the system without any returns on the time they invested.”
READ: Meaghan O’Connell: Who’s taking care of your baby? | Elevating dinner for one: “if it’s not what you do when no one’s looking, it will never be truly what you do.” | Zadie Smith: Find your beach. | “Look,’ she said. ‘She can be your cat. Some friends of mine got her, but they have no idea how to look after a cat. They were feeding her on lobster soup. She’s called Grey Cat. Come in.” The fairytale story of how Doris Lessing took in Jenny Diski. | Eerily composed: a profile of Nico Muhly. (Nico Muhly’s Wish You Were Here.)
LOOK: Interviews with Melbourne gallerists on Good Good Girl. | New Steve Reich album: Radio Rewrite. | Karl Ove Knausgaard and Stephen Grosz in conversation. | Bookmarking: the 20 greatest standup specials of all time. | Classic scone recipe. | Yoga Pot / The New Yoga Pot. | “Serve the braised cabbage warm, with a dollop of soured cream alongside and a wedge of lemon, to squeeze over.” | Leila’s Shop on Instagram.
THINK: “Back-burners.” | “There is a roadmap for much of our lives, neatly plotted out… those who hew most closely to its contours in youth end up feeling most lost in middle age.” | “Ah now I see, this aspect of things was always there, I can see it now where I couldn’t before. I have lived with it for so long but I have found ways of getting round it, or of simply not seeing it, or of pretending it was something else. But now I do see it, as clearly as that chair or table.” | Stop telling women not to “take things personally”: the plague of gendered criticism (this broke my heart).
READ: Alex Ronan’s year as an abortion doula. | Five Dials parenting issue (PDF) ft. Heidi Julevits. | The mother question by Meghan Daum. | Literary mothers: a conversation and book list. | “It’s news if a woman feels terrible about herself in the world—anywhere, anytime, ever.” | Laura Jane drinks wine.
LOOK: Grizzly and Golden. | Criminal: a podcast. | Sight Unseen house tour: Su Wu of I’m Revolting. | bawkbawk’s instagram. | S N I P P E T S. | Mornings After archive on Adult Mag. | Yo-Yo Ma’s On Being podcast episode: Music happens between the notes. | I wrote down some of my favourite places in Hackney for mums.
THINK: Artworks are people.
Just because you have had a baby doesn’t mean you want to retire from the world; mothering is invisible enough in many ways without feeling exiled from cafes and society. Now that my baby has had her first birthday, I feel ready to make some pronouncements about the nicest excursions we’ve had in our neighbourhood!