Recently we ran an appreciation of Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. I believe that I read it at some stage, but I must have left out a couple of the chapters, because my contribution to the literature of time management is an unfinished draft of 37 Bad Habits of People Who Just Muddle Through.
That’s why I generally find myself sending off this newsletter too late and too quickly. To keep myself going I listen to slightly scratchy songs on Grooveshark, one of the great inventions of the internet. This is where I came across Dido, a British vocalist with only four albums to her credit but an amazing talent.
I don’t believe that I have ever heard anyone who conveys misery and sadness of today’s hook-up culture with such poignance. Her best songs are about abandoned lovers or the bitterness of casual relationships. “Honestly OK”, one of my favourites, is a piercing song about a girl whose loneliness is almost suicidal: “And I'm so lonely I don't even wanna be with myself anymore”. “Everything to lose” was an inspired choice as the theme song of the dreary film Sex and the City 2.
I think there is a point here. Her artistry reminds me that happiness can only come from loving commitment. The pain of drifting from job to job and lover to lover can be so overwhelming that it crushes people, making them feel worthless (the title of one of her songs) and abandoned.
When most other vocalists sing about broken hearts, they sound theatrical, belting out lyrics embellishing a bouncy tune. But the pain in Dido’s husky voice is the real deal. Check her out.
This week we feature articles by John B. Londregan on US immigration and myself on drones and targeted assassination. Francis Phillips reviews a book by a London journalist who beat addiction and Alma Acevedo analyses the hoary political cliché “I’m personally opposed, but…”
Cheers & good night,