I'm hooked on the Select Committee's interrogation of various top coppers in pursuit of the hacking story: the Murdochs up next. You can watch it on the BBC, or follow the minute-by-minute coverage on the Guardian. Fairly squirmy so far: Britain's most senior policeman (until yesterday) doesn't seem to think there's anything odd about taking £12,000 of free health-spa luxury. And 25% of the Metropolitan Police's publicity/press department are ex-News International staff. Intriguing if not downright fishy.
However, I want to say thanks to my many friends for their birthday presents and cards: Penguin postcards, Soviet architecture books, book tokens, a photography day, 'Johnners' tapes, Moomins items, camera kit, reading lights: so very much, I'm overwhelmed by your kindness. And the downfall of the Murdochs and the Tories!
I've also bought myself a few things:
Francis Spufford's Red Plenty (a novel of Soviet Utopianism).
David Seed's Science Fiction: A Very Short Introduction.
Mark Radcliffe's memoir, Reelin' in the Years.
The 6th and final Moomins Comic Strip volume.
Robert Coover's The Public Burning, a sprawling (post-?)modernist take on 1950s/60s American politics.
Iain McDonald's The Dervish House, another addition to the postcolonial move in science and speculative fiction.
Oh yes, and some interesting CDs (none of them 10,000 Maniacs' MTV Unplugged today): Natalie Merchant's Ophelia (she was the lead singer in 10,000 Maniacs), Welsh Rare Beat Vol. 1, The Horrors' Skying, the remastered box set of R.E.M.'s Lifes Rich Pageant (how I mourn that missed apostrophe) and three folk box sets from the Guardian: Pete Seeger's American Industrial Ballads, Newport Folk Festival 1959 and Joan Baez's Songbird.