No Complaints #71: Potter, Periods and Paper

I wrote something quite personal this week, about having had cancer and wanting the government to reinstate funding for second stem cell transplants. There are links in there explaining how to write to your MP to ask them to join the campaign to reverse the decision, so please do so if you can. (The rest of the newsletter is more light-hearted than this top bit, I swear.)

Things to read

“It is a privilege to be able to be afford to be healthy. Having had money and not had money, it’s clear to me that health does have a cost. It is not free. One needs, at the very least, time to exercise, money to buy food. The times in my life when I have been able to lose weight have been the times in my life when I could afford to lose weight.”

This is a really fascinating look at the connection between having money and being able to lose weight. Email to Pocket.


“Just how many fake followers does Trump really have? Well, it’s difficult to determine, and the results are all over the place. According to the site Status People, which tracks how many Twitter accounts are bots, inactive, or real, only 21 per cent of Trump’s Twitter followers are real, active users on the platform. The rest are either bots, dead bots, or real people who no longer log into Twitter. By Status People’s estimate, only two million of the supposed 10.3 million followers that Trump bragged about last week are actually listening to him.”

Since Twitter seems to have become Donald Trump's primary means of communication with the world, the news that he's mostly talking to bots has cheered me right up. Email to Pocket.


“My dad liked [taking me to fashion events] because he thought it was fascinating. He would be like, 'We’re in a room full of the most beautiful women in the world, and they’re all wearing the most unflattering outfits.' Whereas my mom was just like, 'Tavi, I want to go to the Jewish Museum. Can we leave?'”

Tavi Gevinson talking to Grace Coddington is a combination I cannot resist. Email to Pocket.


“Pushing off with around 70 other people, they soon ran out of petrol, leaving the boat drifting in open water. When an Italian rescue ship finally found them, many of the migrants fought to grab hold of the ropes thrown down to them. In the chaos, many people were knocked into the water – including Omar. Witnesses said after treading water for a while, Omar eventually went under. She was never seen alive again. She was 21 years old. ”

This story of Samia Omar, the Olympic athlete who drowned in the Med trying to escape al-Shabab, will break your heart. Email to Pocket.


“A 39-year-old explained that one of the most stressful parts about getting her period at work is trying to hide it from the men surrounding her. 'You have to make it past all your noisy male coworkers who are watching you go back and forth to the restroom,' she told the Harris researchers. She's not the only one who feels this way: five per cent of women don't carry their purse to the restroom for fear that others will guess that it's their time of the month.”

I live for articles like this, where women talk about periods and don't give a damn if men might find it "icky". Email to Pocket.


Things to listen to

I believe I might have mentioned how much I love the detective novels of Margery Allingham in this space before... Anyway, Radio 4 Extra has been running a splendid adaptation of her Traitor's Purse recently, starring Roger Allam. It features a languid detective, vintage car chases, and multiple memory loss/restoration storylines. What's not to like? Also, the BBC radio app is now available in the US, so there is now no excuse for you not to listen, American readers.

+ I also enjoyed this interview with Karina Longworth of the You Must Remember This podcast this week (as recommended in NCs #19 and #30).


Things to watch

Ugh, James Bond.

You will get the hang of it, I know it.

I would eat this paper ramen.


Compulsory medieval thingamabob

"Um, we'd like to get a morning after pill..."

The guest gif

Me, reading Harry Potter and the Cursed Child this week. We went into some detail about this on the podcast, if you're interested and don't care about being spoiled (you shouldn't).
THE END. See you next time*!
*Next time will probably be next Friday. If you want to suggest things I should include in the next one of these, please do reply and send me links.