Several weeks ago I succumbed again, to the Times Literary Supplement and I love it and it's killing me. Time and money and inadequacy - what a daunting combination of pressures I feel when I read the TLS, and it happens weekly. I don't know how long I can stand it. I think it was a special, short-term subscription. With my other activity taking up so much time, It often happens that I have two issues to catch up on. Last weekend I had a good time. I came upon a list of 2016 writers I had missed, all British or European, that my parochial papers (Canadian and American) had overlooked. I learned a lot and I also spent a lot, forging into some new to me territory. I will be reporting soon. I described my extravagance to a friend explaining that I'd rather have new books than new clothes but met with no agreement. "Clothes for me," she said. I'm looking forward to my new purchases. In the meantime...
Yes, on the other hand, today I received two issues in the mail so I had to catch up again. I read them tonight and I am very discouraged. I don't know anything. All these experts in so many different fields and even in my own areas of co-called expertise make me feel so humble. I am so grateful when I encounter something I have NO interest in. It's like cheesecake. I am so grateful that I don't like cheesecake. I don't have to resist it. In the case of some subjects, I am so grateful that I can skip over them. Unfortunately there is very little that I am not interested in.
Remember what Robert Louis Stevenson wrote: "The world is so full of a number of things/I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings." (A Child's Garden of Verses (first appearance, 1883) I used to quote that thought as a kind of joyful paean. I read recently that a reader thinks it was satirical. Tonight, it strikes me as rueful.
I found my keys.