29 January 2011

Weekend Reading List

It's a particularly uninspiring moment in fashion.
The recent men's fashion season and spring couture seemed one of the most mind-numbingly boring in recent memory - there was alot shown, but scarcely anything to see. It's like the recent (Feb) GQ with the multiple covers (how many were there? Ten different covers? Twenty? One fails to care - it's marketing for nothing) with hardly anything to read inside. I flipped it back and forth (quick to do, it was pathetically thin) and found nothing redeeming in it. When did GQ become this dull, over-designed thing? The graphics seemed to have taken over the content as the vital thing, and this seems symptomatic. It's all bells and whistles, isn't it?Nursing a flu, I find great comfort in The Pillow Book by Sei Sh┼Źnagon, the journal of a court lady of the early 11th century in Heian Japan. This form descends directly into the journal of today - the blog, and I can only wish blogs had this much to teach. The book was completed in the year 1002, and remains one of my touchstones. I'm sure Sei Sh┼Źnagon was quite a monster in her time, but at least she had something to say; She certainly had a point of view.
To round off the Japanese theme, I'm reading Yukio Mishima's The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea, published in Japanese in 1963, and translated into English in 1965. It's sublimely written, with the savagery of the everyday btween its tautly observed lines, so unbloated and unexcessive as to be the antidote of the flabbiness of everything else.

2 comments:

  1. i agree to your GQ comment. i use to love it a few years back. the one that comes to mind is one with beyonce on the cover haha. magazines were better in general when it was about 2007ish

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