Guilty Pleasures

Found myself watching the X Factor last weekend. There, I’ve admitted it. At least yesterday evening I only watched part of it…was more interested in dear Stephen Fry’s programme ‘Planet Word’. I gave myself all sorts of excuses not to watch X. Most of the judges were different. Frequently feel really sorry for the contestants. The booming hype about it sometimes just seems ridiculous. Feel that artists who get a chance to build up career in a more gradual fashion have more of an understanding of that kind of fame and if they want it.

Oh yes, I could write a minor thesis on this stuff and yet there I was on Saturday night watching the thing again and knowing that I would have conversations about it. When I sat down to write this blog I felt there were so many other more worthwhile topics to explore…the important ‘We are the 99%’ demonstrations in America comes to me as a worthy example. ‘The Club Of Rome’ and their explorations into sustainability and economic growth. Since I’m a writer some ‘writing tips’ might be appropriate. I wanted the X Factor juggernaut to zoom by me. (When it comes to vehicles one of my favourites is the Morris Minor.)

But now I have some sort of opinion about the contestants and the judges seem sort of okay though Gary Barlow can be a bit snitty. Even complaining about the thing is sort of entertaining. Maybe one of the attractions of X is that it insists that it is so important but in the grand scheme of things it’s just another tv show with a very clever format. Maybe we sometimes need ‘serious’ frivolities. Compared to trying to understand what the bankers are up to it is pretty straightforward.

Thank God for less guilty pleasures! Got Jonathan Franzen’s ‘Freedom’ out of the library. Great stuff. Sometimes silence is indeed very golden.

Warm wishes,



THE WRITING PROCESS with Grace Wynne-Jones

14th October – 18th November 2011: Fridays 11am-1pm. €165/€150 members
If you want to book a place contact the Irish Writers’ Centre,
19 Parnell Square, Dublin 1 T: 01 872 1302 E: W:

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