Lotta proofreading done today. So I’ll give myself a little dessert, and link to a few miscellaneous items I’ve been meaning to link to for a week or so.

There is Julian in the Guardian on ‘dating’ for instance. It’s funny, I’m an American, but I’ve always hated that word. It just sounds like such a silly, stilted, unreal, arbitrary activity – ‘dating’.

Although I find US-bashing a tiresome game, I do object to one lamentable feature of the American way of life that has insidiously infected our indigenous culture: dating. When I grew up, no one talked about dating, let alone did it. You “went out” with someone or, if you wanted to be cool, were “seeing” someone. But it is not the word I object to. It’s the ethos.

Yeah. I object to the word too though. I think the word is probably part of the ethos. It seems to turn interactions between potential lovers into something bizarre, formalized, unlike more ordinary (or as one might say, ‘quotidian’) interactions between friends, colleagues, acquaintances, people on the bus and in the shops.

Then there are a few more of Julian’s columns – one on the use of making mistakes and one on the difference between Aristotle and self-help. And one on speech as act and the implications of speech-acts for freedom of speech. It’s relevant to what we’ve been discussing lately about Theo van Gogh and Rohan Jayasekera.

And speaking of that discussion, there is a post about Jayasekera and his article at Index on Censorship (not to mention his position at same) on Harry’s Place by Juan Golblado, a reader of ours who commented on the subject here too. There is a lot worth reading at Harry’s Place right now. Well there always is – and especially at the moment I want to point to a number of particular items. Maybe I will just mention one or two. There’s a brief but sharp comment on Livingstone and Qaradawi. There’s an amusing dissent from Johann Hari’s defense of Chavs. There’s a post by Harry on Jayasekera’s reply to his critics. And there’s a post on a book I read and recommended here a year or so ago, Jonathan Rose’s The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes.

Hmm. That’s only some of the things I wanted to link to. Well – more later. There are still about forty pages left…

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