May resonate with residents of London, whose boom is transforming it into a macro-Brussels-style shithole – lots on top, lots down below, not much in between.

EU working languages & linguistic discrimination

Why pleb-speakers (I’d have thought of Greeks, Bulgarians, Turks(!) before Italians, not to mention the Cataloonies, who a few years ago thought the world was tilting their way…) from outside the EU core will never get a job there. What an immense mess, and how immensely profitable for some.

Yet another advantage of Hackney life

Children can observe that, unlike owner-following cartoon speed lines, blood lost by fleeing real-life stabbing victims forward-propagates: drops land and then spatter quite powerfully in the direction of travel. Hipsters can repeat the experiment with particularly viscous brews.

Borrowed glory

Tim Parks slags some prominent Italian-English literary translators and praises some lesser-known ones in the New York Review of Books: The problem is that it is hard for the wider public or even the critics really to know whether they have been given a good translation, and not easy even for the editors who have…

Child’s play

Sunday a.m., parent-organised rugby practice for small boys on a park pitch up the Lea Navigation, large man clutching and shouting at infant: “YOU ARE NOT CONTRIBUTING VALUE TO THE TEAM! GET INTO THE SCRUM!” Sunday p.m., background chitchat on a walk for early secondary private schoolgirls round the gentrified Hackney badlands: “She’s so procrastinating…