I’ve had another go at customizing a Hugo theme but, as before, I’m finding that I can do most of what I want simply by editing the CSS. I’m having problems with the alignment but I think I can sort it out. Got a bookshelf from @moondeer’s plugin but need to customize it.

That’s the 3rd day in a row I’ve had to reboot the MacBook Air to force it to sync with iCloud — and this time it didn’t even work. I seem to be permanently stalled at 93KB out of 93KB. What’s up, Apple?

A tweet with 1000 likes and 17 angry vicious replies will still look like a dumpster fire, even though almost everyone liked it!

In How to fix Twitter, Noah Smith advises Twitter to add Dislikes; but wouldn’t it be better to go back to the time before it had Likes?

So, here is the explanation I promised as to why Literal.club is not for me. I don’t need an alternative to Goodreads: I’m happier when I’m not keeping track of my reading.

The upshot is I’ve no longer had it with Apple and I’m no longer (particularly) glad that I resisted the temptation to get an M1 MacBook Air!

Rebooting cleared the logjam, I’m pleased to say. But that’s the second time I’ve rebooted in 24 hours. I hope I’m not going to have to do this every day.

Well, I got my missing iCloud folders back but the Mac has again stopped syncing with iCloud. It says it’s uploading and downloading “items” but at 0Kb/sec. I’ve really had it with Apple. So glad I resisted temptation to get an M1 MacBook Air when they came out.

I finished reading Andrew Taylor, The King’s Evil, the third in a series set in Restoration London but the first I’ve read. I’m not going to write about it till I’ve read the others. Contemporary with last decade of Marvell’s life, though he isn’t mentioned in this one📚

OK, this worked: I unchecked iCloud Drive in Finder preferences, rebooted the MacBook Air, and then rechecked iCloud Drive. It took a minute or so to refresh but, when it did, the user-created folders were again visible. I’ll know next time. iCloud is a nightmare.

Help! Last week, my MacBook Air wouldn’t sync with iCloud, so I signed out of iCloud and then back in. Now, some folders on iCloud, including Web, containing most recent html pages, isn’t visible from Mac, though I can still see it in iPad’s Files. How can I get it back again?

I had my booster yesterday followed by a restless night but I think that had as much to do with the high winds and rain as with the vaccine. Thanks to said wind and rain, I noticed that I hadn’t closed one of the Velux windows fully when I had it open during the summer.

I was racking my brains trying to remember Bruno Bettelheim’s name this morning and it just wouldn’t come. I kept thinking “Brigid Brophy”. Right initials, anyway.

A tweet from Adam Roberts yesterday, comparing the volumes of two collections of Basil Bunting’s poetry (the smaller of the two titled Complete Poems) sent me back to a post of mine from last year, Reading poetry in scholarly editions. I’d forgotten a lot of detail.

In the latest issue of Talk about books, I attempt to deal with an entire series of detective novels in a single post. In the end, I had to skip two (Medusa and Back to Bologna) but I’ll come back to them in future. After all, Zen was just a policeman: Dibdin’s Venetian detective

After my previous post, I tried logging the Mac out of iCloud and logging back in again. Fingers crossed.

Since I upgrated to Monterey, my Mac won’t sync with iCloud, and it’s extremely frustrating. I also upgraded to iCloud+ so I could use iCloud email with my own domain name. I’m definitely going to cancel that. What happened to “it just works”?

Three book reviews that I originally posted on Literal.club. (Charles Cumming, Box 88; Louise O’Neill, After the Silence; and Michael Connelly, The Law of Innocence) 📚

I get really annoyed when I Google the distance from one place to another and I’m told it’s “a 5-minute drive” or “only a short taxi journey”. How do I convert that into kilometers? (It seems to be about 3Km, but I’d like something more precise.)

The Wheel of Time is the latest fantasy to plunder Irish culture. Are we okay with that?

I don’t see why not — we weren’t using it 😜

I’m likely to add two paid subscription levels to Talk about books newsletter: PDF and print editions.

I think I’m going to delete my Literal.club account. I’ve no desire to track my reading, or to rate or review books. I like my choice of things to read to be haphazard and serendipitous, not organized and regimented. I’ll write a blog post about this in next 2 weeks.

… a political writer convinced that political dogma (of any sort) is inimical to writing itself … the country’s most popular writer who holds some of our least popular opinions.

Ira Wells (scroll down) on Margaret Atwood’s contradictions 📖

I’m reading the 4th in a row of 5 of Michael Dibdin’s Aurelio Zen novels 📖 that I’m going to write about in next week’s newsletter. I wonder if that explains why I’m listening to more Danilo Rea and Stefano Bollani than usual — and at least as much Enrico Pieranunzi as usual?

And, speaking about toggles in iOS/iPadOS, I’d love a quick (instant!) way to switch smart quotes on and off. As I’ve said before, I usually want curly quotes but often need straight ones. This switch is quick and easy on Windows and macOS, but it’s tedious on iPad or iPhone.

I wish iOS and iPadOS had a way to toggle “select mode” on and off. I’m fed up trying to position the insertion point precisely only to find that I’ve selected a word instead. Yes, I know the thing to do in that case is to delete the whole word and retype it but … habit.