Tychy aspires to be a prosateur. Not a journalist or an author, but somebody who specialises in sculpting beautiful prose. I do not know the extent to which I have achieved this over the years, but it remains my supreme ambition.
I now spend much more time editing and proofreading my writing than considering the content. As I get progressively more mad I find that I can now work only in conditions of total silence. At the Edinburgh University Main Library, I will switch my seat seven or eight times until I have found the quietest spot. At home I will growl at my flatmates whenever they dare to intrude upon my silence with polite conversation. Such is my demented dedication to ensuring that nobody retires from pubic life or that no politician appeals for clam after a bomb attack.
Perhaps I had grown mildly confident that every page of my website was unspoilt by misspellings and grammatical errors. Yet earlier today I got talking with a Spanish friend who admires the website. One thing was troubling him. Why the tagline, “Literary Criticism with Little Boxes”?
Yes, “Literary Criticism with Cajones.”
I blinked. I thought that Cajones meant… well, the things that a bull has.
He shook his head. It turned out that Cojones dangle from a bull and that Cajones are the wooden drawers of a dresser or desk.
I have read enough Hemingway not to spell them with an H. But all of the essays and short stories which I have been frantically proofreading over the years have ended up under a tagline which contains the most excruciating howler!
I feel humbled. I also feel very frail. My literary criticism has at no stage possessed cojones. My balls have been made of wood.