Questions for Dalrymple

One of the greatest writers living today

Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Gavin » 07 Jun 2013, 16:33

Clinton and Steve have just had it confirmed that they will get to see TD soon in France. I might even get to see them too, in Paris.

Anyway, they will ask him some of our questions. Feel free to add any further ones over on their site (or here). Now is our chance, perhaps!

I am going to e-mail Clint and Steve directly and will ask tentatively whether TD has seen this forum (he may not wish to endorse it) and, in effect, whether he thinks there is going to be a civil war in the UK due to Islam and multiculturalism. I'll also thank him for his writing.
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Elliott » 07 Jun 2013, 17:20

Here's one question, to add to the others I listed earlier in this thread:

How can you tell the difference, in a person's behaviour, between being undeservedly confident (having high self-esteem) and "acting out" (pretending to have high self-esteem when they actually hate themselves)?
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Nathan » 01 Dec 2013, 16:49

I would like to ask him in the most polite possible way what it is that he actually likes, and how he relaxes. I know the cynical, fairly misanthropic grumpy-old-man nature of his makes him the writer we know and love, but I can't believe there isn't a more light-hearted side to him somewhere.

Also, inspired by the hilarious mental image conjured up by the quote which Gavin has just reposted about his proudest sporting achievement having been sent off in a rugby pitch for reading on the field, I would be interested to know how he related to his peers as a teenager in the Swinging Sixties.
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Gavin » 01 Dec 2013, 17:18

I think the jovial side of TD is quite often exposed in his writing, he's just dealing with serious matters a lot of the time because, well, they're important - bad policies cause suffering.

It would be good though, yes, to find out more about the things he enjoys in his leisure time. I think it is mainly reading. You've probably seen this picture of him relaxing in his kitchen!

When I met him he was humble, courteous and friendly, and a great raconteur with Daniel Hannan, albeit about serious subjects (including the pitiful state of the Conservative Party).

Re. the early days, I remember him writing about being something of a militant atheist and wandering around in his trenchcoat etc, so I think he bought into the counter-revolutionary stuff to some degree, but dare say only privately and not radically. There is also the tale about him being considered extremely intelligent by his teachers even at a very young age and engaging them in discussion about Plato etc.

It interests me the way he rejected the example and ideology set by his father and grew into such a decent man. Just goes to show, contra the left, that people are not always compelled to follow the example set to them.
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Paul » 01 Dec 2013, 19:35

A Rayburn 'Royal' woodburner, in red and looking in fine condition. Very nice pieces of kit are those. I've always wanted one, since a friend (royal blue model) fitted one in his kitchen.

I want TD's 'Keep 'Calm and Carry On' wartime sign too. How wonderful.
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Nathan » 01 Dec 2013, 19:49

Gavin wrote:It would be good though, yes, to find out more about the things he enjoys in his leisure time. I think it is mainly reading. You've probably seen this picture of him relaxing in his kitchen!

When I met him he was humble, courteous and friendly, and a great raconteur with Daniel Hannan, albeit about serious subjects (including the pitiful state of the Conservative Party).



I'd actually never seen that picture (or that article) before, so thanks for posting the link. It's such a shame that TD is probably not well-known enough for a biography of him to be written, because there must be so much fascinating material to work with.

Some people are so much more suited to being older, and considering his outlook on life and comparing and contrasting the modern photo of him with the ones that look like they were taken 30 or so years ago I would definitely have to include TD in that list!

You might have said before, Gavin, but what sort of event did you meet him at?
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Gavin » 01 Dec 2013, 20:08

Here's the lowdown on that.

btw Shame the "Keep calm.." slogan became such a cliche and an often-vulgarised marketing opportunity. I bet he got his sign before that happened!
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Charlie » 02 Dec 2013, 08:52

Caleb wrote:I am always concerned that my own disdain for a lot of politics is simply outrage porn, that I'd actually be upset if politicians (at least on the left) didn't do all sorts of crazy and immoral things. I think there's a gross sort of narcissism at play whereby we can use politicians and politics as a whipping post without truly questioning our (and I mean "our" in a general sense) role in the decline. We can envision ourselves as somehow above and outside it all from the comfort of our own armchairs.


I think this is a concern that we all (should) have, and I'd like to ask Dalrymple about it.
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Steve » 03 Dec 2013, 23:13

Nathan wrote:I would like to ask him in the most polite possible way what it is that he actually likes, and how he relaxes. I know the cynical, fairly misanthropic grumpy-old-man nature of his makes him the writer we know and love, but I can't believe there isn't a more light-hearted side to him somewhere.


I think Gavin is right that Dalrymple mostly enjoys reading and writing. I think he also enjoys cooking and does it frequently along with his wife. Clint and I have been the beneficiaries of some very good meals cooked on that stove (that Paul mentioned), which they had shipped from England to their country home in France. He likes to pick blackberries around their property. And of course, he loves to go book hunting and also attends various cultural events: museums, plays and so forth.
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Re: Questions for Dalrymple

Postby Gavin » 03 Dec 2013, 23:41

Hello stranger! You're a lucky man with all this inside info ;)

Of course, it really goes without saying, but the other thing TD no doubt enjoys a lot is just thinking; philosophising about what he has read and what he's going to write, about what is true. Indeed there is his book The Pleasure of Thinking, which I have not yet read. It's available here for only £276.88 - at last a book properly valued!
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