I’ve been very busy this weekend, but here are three things that I enjoyed reading in between upgrades and back-ups: Minette Marrin on Jacqui Smith and UK prostitution1, Shuggy on Barack Obama and the US constitution, and an obituary of William Donaldson:

[Donaldson] first came to prominence in 1961 as the London producer of Beyond the Fringe, which brought together Peter Cook, Alan Bennett and Jonathan Miller. He was also the first promoter to arrange a Bob Dylan concert at a time when the singer was barely known in Britain. “He [Dylan] was sitting in my office one day when I came back from lunch,” Donaldson recalled. “I couldn’t get rid of the f***er.”

Donaldson’s Henry Root letters made me scream with laughter when I was a kid. My sympathy for the recipients of his (often nasty) fake missives usually, but not always, dissolved as the victims’ replies revealed them to be one or more of the following: vain, pompous, or touchy.

  1. When Marrin wrote an article about prostitution back in March, a “feminist” called Samara Ginsberg declared it “totally gross”, having previously written “a VERY angry letter” complaining about Marrin’s making a comparison between ritualistic religious slaughter of animals and fox hunting. I look forward to reading Ginsberg’s response to this one. I’m sure it’ll be just as rib-ticklingly un-self-aware. For comparison, here’s a real feminist in action. []