READ: The Republic of Motherhood. | The princess myth: Hilary Mantel on Diana. | “Ah, the clock. Let me tell you about my clock.” / I need more time. | Chelsea Manning’s style. | “When I came back with the notebooks, she sighed. She knew she was too weak to use them. She looked at me and asked, Do you think they’ll make a film about me?”
LOOK: “If you feel something, say something.” | Long-cooked vegetables. | Chicken fattee.
THINK: There’s no such thing as western civilisation. | Why we fell for clean eating. | “Did we feminists set ourselves up for this false equivalence, by talking among ourselves about who should sit down and the taste of male tears, at the expense of addressing the substance of anti-feminist arguments?” | “Even with other managers, I often got ignored or interrupted. At one point, John had a suggestion for how I could get more airtime. He wanted me to go to school — to learn to be a stand-up comic.” | How to write a star study | and an op ed | and about Nazis / (Nazisploitation.) | “We Brits are particularly susceptible to the double life, aren’t we? Is it because we are a sort of theatrical, and sort of unfaithful, culture?” John le Carré and Ben Macintyre in conversation. | “We wish for more complexity and logic in our politics, so we look to make political art that is logical and complex: a genre defined by John Le Carré.” | “Once your children know that even one person detests their bones and breath, they know.” | “A friend of mine repeatedly told her 5-year-old son, “Remember, everybody’s equal.” She thought she was getting the message across. Finally, after seven months of this, her boy asked, Mommy, what’s ‘equal’ mean?'” | Is there any point to protesting? | “The single essential survival skill for anybody interested in creating art is to learn to defend this inner life from the world.” | I have a guilty secret.
READ: I have never highlighted an Instapaper save more than this profile of Rachel Cusk. Eg: “Wanting people to like you corrupts your writing.” | “About two months before our first baby died, I announced to the internet I was pregnant with her…” | Wonderful profile of London’s mayor Sadiq Khan. | Growing up behind the scenes at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. | I am half way through Conversations with Friends. In an interview on Literary Friction, Sally Rooney says she was surprised how many people were interested in her, rather than the book. Reading about her university debating career has made me one of those people. (I also thought this episode of Literary Friction about race was very good.)
LOOK: A special object. | Nigel Slater will publish a book of autumn and winter food and ritual. | How to make a layer cake that won’t collapse. | Coconut lentil dhal / more dhal. (As I post this, I realise I left the cumin seeds out of the vat sitting on my stove.) | SALT, FAT, ACID, HEAT. | Don’t forget Top of the Lake Season II is out.
THINK: Not my usual type of recommendation but I liked this man’s approach to money. Probably just as relevant to non-Australians. | How climate scepticism turned into something more dangerous. Also available as a podcast on the Guardian’s Audio Long Read feed. | Twitter is definitely making you more anxious. I have deleted it from my phone and it’s made such a difference.
READ: Before the internet. | “You are getting yourself a bad reputation as a lonely woman. Stop it at once.” | Seven rules for being alone. | “Why I hate my best short story.” | “Some wine I drank in England.” | “My control over words felt like a monkey of barrels.” | Bohemia was never a safe country for women. | “In today’s world, a secondhand woman is like a secondhand car,” he said. “Once it’s been driven, it’s not worth a fraction of its original selling price.” A secondhand man, on the other hand, Yu explained, is like renovated property in China’s real-estate market: “The value only appreciates.” | …whether the recipe was for a typewriter with candy keys or a rubber duck with potato chip lips, it began, like a prayer, in the exact same way: “Make cake according to directions on packet.” | “There is no diagnosis.” | In praise of Daphne du Maurier. | “Because my home life was stable, I had the luxury of dreaming up very bad situations and strategizing how to survive them.” | Listening to Elif Batuman narrating The Idiot on audiobook.
LOOK: Bolt hole. | Vita’s cigarette case. | Everyday oil.
THINK: How to better talk to children about their art. | How to raise a reader. | Ask Polly: I’m terrified of having kids! | “Self-esteem decreased during pregnancy, increased [after birth] until the child was six months old and then gradually decreased over following years.” Mothers with three-year-olds hit a low point in their self-esteem. | Sexting in the present tense. | Actually, how Donald Trump eats his steak matters. | “[W]e know that protest is not the answer but it creates space for the answer.” | A reminder that this boring-looking politics podcast is excellent.
“Anything can happen, the tallest towers/ Be overturned, those in high places daunted,/ Those overlooked regarded.”
READ: I write, “HORMONES ARE LIFE. HORMONES ARE MENTAL ILLNESS.” I write, “EQUALITY BETWEEN THE SEXES DOES NOT EXIST.” | “You have to teach yourself, if you have never known it before, that conversation is a thing you can have with yourself as well as other people.” | Clerks. | “Feel the feelings, as unpleasant as they might be, and return to the breath. By working at being with your breath, your body may become an anchor for the baby to find calm in the present moment.” | What if we cultivated our ugliness? | “I can’t help thinking there are men who still somewhere deep inside them have an unconscious fantasy that one day they’ll be helpless again. And they don’t want the person who’s going to be looking after them to be thinking, ‘Fuck you, I wish you’d die in the night.’” ( Why she broke by Helen Garner. / The good daughter.)
LOOK: Time to get into jelly. | Boiled meat. | Beautiful. | Eyes as wide as swimming pools.
THINK: “This is one of the penalties of being a better survivor. You survive, but maybe not quite as intact as you were before.” | “To be pregnant in public was in poor taste — unsophisticated, trashy, unbecoming, obscene.” | Many terrorists’ first victims are their wives. Why can’t we talk about it? | Depression might not be due to past traumas and present stresses but because of skewed visions of what lies ahead. | How writing heals the body. | “We tend to think of “wellness” as the province of swoony liberal elites, but it does, in fact, blossom at both cultural poles…” | “I want to be buried with my editorial endorsements,” [Hillary] said with a laugh. “I want an open casket and they can all be piled on top of me. You won’t even be able to see my body.” (P.S.)
And here is an experiment: to see/save all the links as a list, and easily save to Pocket.