Friday, March 24, 2006

Detective stories

After all hose years of reading serious and less serious books, I have to admit that nothing beats a good detective story. I can't resist even the lousy ones on TV. An unsolved murder, a kidnapping, a disappearance are enough to wake me up whereas I have been known to sleep through the "best" films and abandon good books halfway through. I know that "Mrs Dalloway" for instance is a must read for anyone with any claim to culture. In a certain way I enjoy it very much but after a couple of pages my mind strays. It does to when I plod my way through political and/or historical works. But give me a good old fashioned Simenon and it will have my undevided attention. I find it rather humiliating to be plagued with this chambermaid's mentality. I rarely allow myself to give in to such a cheap tendency however and apart from Fr 2 "Soiree de polards" on Fridays I try to only watch the news and serious documentaries. Right now I am reading Robert Fisk's huge tome The Great War for Civilization, the Conquest of the Middle East. It is cumbersome in size and not easy going but at least I gather useful information and an insight into international politics and while I am in the process of reading it I find it rewarding. Unfortunately I forget much of the details the following day while I vividly remember years later all the events of the cheap detective novels that I have quickly perused, feeling guilty all the time about the waste of time.
I wonder if all this is the incept of Alzheimer or just the futile nature of my intellect.

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