Gush 'n' Shudder

Every now and then, I come across a piece of writing that makes me (a) gush or (b) shudder.

Not having an interest in Pinterest, I thought perhaps I'll gather the pieces that grab my attention here. The ones that fall into the Gush category are the ones that if this blog were a mantlepiece, I'd put int the prized centre position.

The Shudder things will hopefully not number too many, but I do find myself gasping at examples of shocking grammar or language as I go about my day, and I thought it would be a nice exercise to curate the stinking pile of mismatched words here, so you can have a look and marvel at it too - kinda like one of those weird art sculptures that's made of loads of people's turfed out junk.

So let's get on with it then.


  1. "Nobody's son" - a reflection on his father's death by Mark Slouka published in The New Yorker. This is one of the most moving, beautifully written pieces I've ever read.   
  2. A feature in The Atlantic by Jeffrey Goldberg talking about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and his love of Bruce Springsteen. I'd never heard of Chris Christie, but this is a superb piece of writing and by the end of it, I had a very coloured-in perspective of who he is, and what the Boss and politics mean to him. I was sent a link to it after I wrote this about The Boss and Wayne Swan.  
  3. Jeffrey Eugenides' advice to young writers  Just as I was about to abandon Facebook, this little pearler popped up in my newsfeed. Sure, his audience for the speech is 'young' writers, but his advice transcends age and writing ability. You know when you read something and you feel a tingle? It happened to me when I read this. It's a reflection on life as a writer that is unbelievably eloquent and for me, so searingly honest. It reminds you that even (especially) when you're in the midst of a steaming pile of excrement, when life as you wanted it to be be hasn't quite measured up to the dream sequence you had in your head, that you're still a witness to it. You can still (and should) write about it. 
  4. A feature by Gideon Haigh on Shane Warne.  I first read this several years ago and it really left a mark on me. I'm not particularly into cricket or Shane Warne, but this is a stunning piece of writing for the way it beautifully captures a portrait of one of the most enigmatic and successful sportsmen of our time. I contacted Gideon and he was kind enough to send me this link. The story was first published in The Monthly in 2005. It's a cracker. Especially the line about Warnie throwing GH a packet of ciggies!  


Skater's indeed.

Spotted on one of the main intersections on St Kilda Rd - another (very visible) case of a cat-apostrophe! 

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