Everyone has them, I'm sure. You dated the wrong person. You said the wrong thing. You took the wrong job choice. I went to a party once, where everyone stared at me, no one wanted to talk to me, and ten minutes in someone suggesting playing murder. I regret agreeing to go to that party. There's a lot of little cruel things I've said and done without thinking. Mostly, I don't beat myself up over it. It's life. You make mistakes. But, when you are a writer, sometimes, you have work that you regret, and which remains in print so that people can see it forever and ever. They can quote you, if they feel the need, even. Fortunately, while I have published things I regret writing, I have never written an article that begins where a man stops me on the street and asks if I would like an Asian prostitute, and then proceeded presents such an awful, racist vision of Asian beauty that you will not know where to laugh or be seriously offended.
Unfortunately, Paul Theroux has.