What I’ve been watching and reading while I’m sick

I’ve been sick recently, which means I’ve had the time to read and watch a lot of things. Not all of it has been great; I managed to power through season six of Parks and Recreation in a day (I’d already seen it, but if you haven’t it’s amazing – it picks up after the first season or two).

But as well as making it through a book on conspiracy theories, I’ve just finished reading Graham Greene’s May we borrow your husband? And other comedies of the sexual life. Despite the title, the sex isn’t at all explicit; most of the comedy is on the relationships, the strange encounters people have with each other.

Interestingly, in this collection of short stories Greene often uses the vantage point of a disinterested observer – staying at the same hotel, overhearing a conversation at a restaurant. It works well enough in this context, because it allows him to flit in, casually, to a new setting and context, and pretend that he doesn’t know the answers either that spiral out of the slice of life he shows.

I love Graham Greene – he’s one of my all time favourite authors. I wouldn’t rate this as one of his best pieces, but if you enjoy his work it’s still well worth a read.

I’ve also just started watching Master of None, Aziz Ansari’s new sitcom on netflix. I loved Aziz Ansari in Parks and Recreation, although I found his stand-up slightly underwhelming. But I’m enjoying Master of None. It has a good feel to it – more Louis CK than Friends, I suspect, but still hopeful while recognising the weirdness of the world. In the first few episodes I’ve watched, I particularly the episode on the struggles of parents immigrating to the US, and how they relate to their children. I think it bodes well for the show that the creators can take the piss about themselves.

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