Is it rude to ask "Where are you originally from?" to someone with an obvious foreign accent while speaking English? This often comes up for me with cab/Uber drivers, many of whom in my area are immigrants from African countries. While we're trapped in a small space making small talk anyway, it often seems to lead to an actually interesting conversation.
But I know how loaded that question can be, and I don't want to make anyone feel uncomfortable, particularly in a situation where "the customer is always right" is a particularly freighted concept due to rating systems and the like. (When I remember to, I phrase it as "Have you always lived around here?" And I only ask if they seem small-talk-inclined in the frist place.)
I had bad, semi-situational depression in the fall. Four months later I am happier than I have maybe ever been and my life is better than I could have possibly imagined then. Some of it was therapy, some of it was Situation just passing with time. Some of it was actively dealing with Situation in the best way I could. (Some of it was therapy to understand that Situation was not a binary choice with two terrible options.)
Be good to yourself, in both the immediate and long-term sense. (I have a hard time remembering when I am depressed and anxious that eating well, moving about regularly, etc, are also important ways of being good to myself.)
related, I could write an entire listicle of "things I suspected were racial slurs while reading Christie and had to google and yep they are"
my google search history is probably thinking horrible things about me
I've been on a Christie rereading tear lately (why are all the Tommy and Tuppence mysteries so badly plotted when they are clearly the superior chracters?), but it's come close to being ruined for me several times lately by the misogyny and racism, particularly (lately) the misogyny (because I wasn't as conscious of it the first time through). Kind of disturbed by how much of this I must have internalized when I started reading these books at age 9 or 10.
The absolute worst was Taken At The Flood (also published as There Is a Tide), which was very good but ends with a otherwise good female character deciding she loves a man LITERALLY AS HE IS CHOKING HER AND HE DOESN'T STOP HIMSELF EITHER, HE HAS TO BE STOPPED BY HERCULE POIROT AND THIS IS A HAPPY ENDING
I may take a Christie break after this. What scratches the itch with a little less misogyny and Empire? (I love Sayers, and have read Elizabeth Peters' and Laurie R. King's entire oeuvres.)
I am a completist, a fanatic about reading in order, and a Sayers fan who counts Gaudy Night as my favorite book in the world. I hope that is enough to convince you when I say: save yourself, and stop. Start with Strong Poison and read the Wimsey/Vane quartet through from there (Strong Poison, Have His Carcase, Gaudy Night, Busman's Honeymoon).
If you want to start with Peter without a love interest, start with either the Nine Tailors (which takes place contemporaneously to the Wimsey/Vane quartet, but doesn't include Harriet Vane,) Murder Must Advertise (same), or the Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (the book immediately before Strong Poison).
The early books are charming in their way but you'll appreciate them much more if you're already predisposed to Peter from the later ones. I've read most of them at least five times. I think I have made it through Whose Body twice.
seconded on the unironic recommendation!
I, and I assume most kids born in 1986-1988, learned about oral sex from the Clinton administration (but only blow jobs. I don't think I realized cunnilingus was a thing until, idk, late high school.)
oooh, please share! I also love microhistories.
soft spot in my heart forever for John Donne because I discovered him via Dorothy Sayers novels.