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My father's murder: Taking his life in my hands
January 19, 2009 4:40 AM   Subscribe

"Then I started stripping and cleaning. I told myself it would help sell the flat. How could anyone think of buying it? But I also imagined that if I cleaned long enough and hard enough, the dull patina of dried blood that seemed to cling to every surface would finally go. I hoped that if I emptied the flat of its objects, and pared back its contents to nothing, I would uncover the place that I grew up in, before Ivor was the old man, before he was a legend. I couldn’t find that place, and I didn’t think I would find it in the boxes and among the papers either." David Goldblatt traces his murdered father's life through unpaid bills and unopened letters.
posted by marmaduke_yaverland (19 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite

 
Very well written, and hits close to home. Sifting through the nasty parts of a deceased loved one's life is something I don't wish on anyone.
posted by hanoixan at 5:26 AM on January 19, 2009


Then I started stripping and cleaning...

Okay this went in a WAY different direction than I expected.
posted by rokusan at 5:26 AM on January 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


Fantastic bit of writing. Thanks for the post.
posted by Abiezer at 5:27 AM on January 19, 2009


And I always thought Red Stripe was a Jamaican beer! If drinking that, gets you free invites to spanking parties, I'm converting..
posted by the_epicurean at 5:56 AM on January 19, 2009


Powerful stuff, thanks for this.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:04 AM on January 19, 2009


Okay this went in a WAY different direction than I expected.

initially i thought this was going to be about one of those craigslist ads
posted by fuzzypantalones at 6:18 AM on January 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


Wow that got me at the conclusion.
posted by chococat at 6:21 AM on January 19, 2009


Damn, this gutted me.
posted by that possible maker of pork sausages at 6:28 AM on January 19, 2009


.
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:35 AM on January 19, 2009


(Also, snark-free for a change: yeah, hell of a story. Thanks.)
posted by rokusan at 7:43 AM on January 19, 2009


Wow. Fuckin' Granta still can pick 'em. As I was reading it I was reminded of a James Ellroy memopir of his mom's murder, also in Granta, like fifteen years ago.
posted by mwhybark at 8:09 AM on January 19, 2009


Whoa, that ending bit...

I'm going to start throwing crap out.
posted by bonobothegreat at 8:52 AM on January 19, 2009


Great writing. Thanks for posting this.
posted by desuetude at 10:04 AM on January 19, 2009 [2 favorites]


I am both kicked in the gut by this and resolved to throw out metric tonnes of shit. Man, are diaries ever a good idea?
posted by The Whelk at 10:34 AM on January 19, 2009


Heartbreaking, stunningly told personal stories always get me.
posted by batmonkey at 10:40 AM on January 19, 2009


The towel part got me too. I'm never throwing towels out now but the rest has to go.
posted by dabitch at 11:04 AM on January 19, 2009


Touching.
posted by jellywerker at 12:26 PM on January 19, 2009


What an interesting life his father led. I love that he did it his way regardless.

.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 3:39 PM on January 19, 2009


Fascinating story, well told. Glad I got around to reading this post!
posted by Goofyy at 12:42 AM on January 20, 2009


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