Richard Benson

Month: February, 2014

Rock n Roll Will Never Die, But It Might Have A Nap On Mondays

Over the years I’ve seen The Fiddler’s Arms, a pub round the corner from me on Prince of Wales Road in Kentish Town, try every musical genre known to man to get their Monday nights going. It looks as if February 2014 is the month they finally threw in the towel.

What makes a man?

To Borough to talk to Maria Neophytou and Sarah Perry of the Gender Rights and Equalities Action Trust about their campaign to increase teenage boys’ respect for women and girls. I was looking for some insights for a piece I’m writing for Red magazine about young men and feminism. With male volunteers, Maria and Sarah go […]

A tweet from Bob

This afternoon as I was making beans on toast for the girls’ lunch, I glanced at my Twitter timeline and noticed a tweet from Bob my rock neighbour. It mentioned something happening at a birthday party on the river. Nice, I thought. A birthday party on the Thames seemed a nice thing to be doing, […]

Violet versus literature

I was reading The Outsider this evening when Violet came over and asked me what the book was about. She said she thought it must be about a tramp, because of the cover. I asked if she thought the man looked like a tramp (it is in fact the sculptor Raymond Duchamp-Villon, painted by his […]

Cultivated wildness

I am indebted to @katetooncopy for sharing this picture of what she felt was some rather middle-class grafitti in London: I have sometimes wondered about the labelling of so-called “wild” food. If M&S wild blueberries, for example, were really wild, wouldn’t M&S have had to forage for them? And wouldn’t a foraging corporation really be stealing?

Ben Watt’s book

I’ve been reading Romany and Tom, Ben Watt’s new book about his parents’ lives – and his life with his parents. It’s a good book, honest about this feelings towards his father, and very moving in parts. One thing it caught well was that self-destructive streak some men develop after becoming more successful and acclaimed than […]

Boys and girls and boys

The features editor from Red magazine emails to ask if I can write an opinion piece about some campaigns designed to teach teenage boys to respect women. The idea is to contrast the supposedly more innocent 1980s, when I was a teenager, with the current period when sexism and abuse among 18-25 year old men […]

Transcribing: the Barnsley school

To visit my aunty Lynda at her home in South Yorkshire, to scan the two of my great-grandfather’s World War One medals (the Military and the War) of which she has custody. I need pictures for the story I’ve done for Esquire magazine about researching my great-grandfather’s war record. Afterwards we somehow end up talking […]