Songs for Invertebrates: Auto-Tune, Rhythm, and the Innateness of Music

Justin E. H. Smith in his Substack newsletter, The Hinternet:

My gym in the heart of the 19th arrondissement is inhabited by a goodly mix of young Tunisian beefcakes admiring themselves and one another in the full-wall mirrors; older barrel-shaped strongmen, often with moustaches and faded anchor tattoos on their forearms, as if straight off the carnival circuit circa 1910, where you might see them wearing skimpy leopard-spotted togas and lifting those ball-shaped barbells from the cartoons; and a scattering of scrawny ageing bourgeois who are quite plainly there on the stern recommendation of their doctors.

I fear I belong to this latter category. I gained an embarrassing amount of weight during the first lockdown, and overcompensated by losing it all, and much more, with a strict diet I started in early 2021 (zero flour, zero sugar, etc.). Without an accompanying exercise regime, my muscles atrophied, and by the end of that year I found myself dreading even the task of opening doors. My shoulders were so weak that the mere weight of my arms hanging from them caused tremendous pain. Get back to the gym! the physical therapist said, and so I did.

More here.