Monday, 19 March 2018

Talk of the Town

You can get so much out of a short New Yorker article about a caviar sandwich. As I was reading one the other day, I realised my life would never be complete without learning of this totally random person eating a caviar sandwich every day before getting on the train. The New Yorker does them so well, these brief sketches with no reason but a lot of rhyme, coming out of nowhere, bristling with casual glimpses of New York. They are published each week in the 'Talk of the Town' section, and to me they are still the best part of the magazine.  

The realisation that came to me at some point into the article (which fired up the imagination a lot more than many of their recent short stories, so adult and so horribly mature), was that in the free age of YouTube and fake Spotify accounts, nothing can be sweeter than paying for things you like. 

Really, you could afford to download a Robert Forster record when there were still things you bought (like books, for instance, because you loved the sound of a fresh book). These days, I shudder at the idea of not investing anything into the brilliant Songs To Play. It's an ethical issue but also aesthetical. It's a chance to endow your life not with a beautiful sleeve but a certain kind of sense. To make it more meaningful, and complete. The same way that the life of a random person was made complete with a caviar sandwich by the train platform, on the way home.

Thus, I subscribed. Having read a short article which, in all damn fairness, is of no consequence at all.