Search Results: Brian Doyle

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    How not to make a toast

    • Brian Doyle
    • 23 September 2009

    My mother-in-law stood up on the night before her daughter married me, held her glass aloft, and sighed, 'Let's just hope this one comes off'. Some of the best toasts I ever heard were from children: 'Here's to all mum's husbands past and present!' said one girl, aged 11.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    A bookish look at cars and sport

    • Brian Doyle
    • 05 August 2009
    2 Comments

    What if all the cars and sports teams we name for fleet and powerful animals and cosmic energies and cool-sounding things that don't exist or mean anything are, effective immediately, renamed for literary characters and authors.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Irreconcilable dissonance and other reasons for divorce

    • Brian Doyle
    • 15 July 2009
    8 Comments

    Marriages are houses and unless you keep cleaning, repainting and using duct tape with deft punctilio, everything sags and mould wins. The first divorce I saw up close, like the first car crash you see up close, is imprinted on the inside of my eyelids.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Make sport, not war

    • Brian Doyle
    • 03 June 2009
    1 Comment

    Jimmy was a high school basketball superstar, who went to war after graduating and had both his hands blown off by a mine. Imagine a world where instead of violence, international disputes were decided via epic sports tournaments.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Demerit points for bad poetry

    • Brian Doyle
    • 06 May 2009
    4 Comments

    It is a useful truth that every real feat is built on a mountain of failures. The price for poetry's occasional power is the ocean of self-indulgent, mewling muck produced and published annually under the tattered banner of the Poem.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Prayer for a drunk dad

    • Brian Doyle
    • 22 April 2009
    5 Comments

    At 1am I noticed that the dad of a friend of mine was in the corner drinking hard and telling funny stories. He got drunker and drunker until, at about 3am, he started shouting and cursing and some glass smashed. Finally he fell down.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    On not beating cancer

    • Brian Doyle
    • 04 February 2009
    13 Comments

    A nun once said cancer is a dance partner you don't like, but with whom you have to dance, and either you die or the cancer fades into the darkness at the other end of the ballroom. The words we use about cancers and wars matter more than we know.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    What it's like to be hit by a bullet

    • Brian Doyle
    • 19 November 2008
    4 Comments

    When you get hit by a bullet you never ever forget what it feels like. It feels like you got hit with the biggest rock there ever was. We were going along in the boat and we went around a beach where there was a battle, and a slug hit me in the armpit and knocked me right over.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Vote 1 Michael Palin

    • Brian Doyle
    • 18 September 2008
    3 Comments

    When I heard John McCain had chosen 'Palin' as his running mate, I thought, wow, Michael Palin! Palin understands women (he's worn his share of dresses), animal rights (especially dead parrots), and commerce (particularly the cheese industry).

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Funeral for a marriage

    • Brian Doyle
    • 06 August 2008
    19 Comments

    Divorce is an incredibly powerful and painful chapter in millions of lives every year. Maybe we should create a public ritual for the end of a marriage by which we honour their brave attempt and mourn the death of love and hope.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Giving up on unreadable muck

    • Brian Doyle
    • 09 July 2008
    9 Comments

    As a reader, it's satisfying to reach that moment when you realise you don't have to finish the book you've been ploughing through. A book's unfinishability reflects less on the reader than on the writer. Even great writers flop sometimes.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Incivility trumps the empty dance of manners

    • Brian Doyle
    • 25 June 2008
    5 Comments

    One time we were in a meeting when a very important person proposed a very stupid idea. We knew our uncivil friend would pop a gasket, and he did, albeit in memorably incisive fashion. The silence that followed was a remarkable sound.

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