Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Much Ado about.... lunch

I guess I am never gonna blog about my trip to North Florida with three crazy women, a dog, and miles and miles of nothing, and then gators.

<------------- three of the four crazy women and the dog

That's all you get cause now I've forgotten what was so funny. I didn't take notes. :(

<-------------- gator --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Yesterday, I went to lunch with Mary and Emily, also former students and presently University of Georgia students.

We met at Chili's by the mall.

Since I was going to that area, I decided to go to Cotsco.

BTW: I thought the Monday before Thanksgiving would not be a crazy day to be on Barrett Parkway... or even Costco.


The place was overrun with people with big butts.

The aisles were crowded,

shopping buggys stacked up in major-shopping buggy jams,

folks lined up at the sample lines...

Maude: Henry, look at this artichoke spread.
Henry: Not now, Maude, they have motor oil for a dollar a can -- I'm gonna get 10, 000 cans. Maude: This is so good. I'll buy two gallons, and I'll take the 98 oz bags of crackers.

they hovered over the turkeys and hams [folks were elbowing each other to get at them], and the check yourself out line had ten people in it. Costco man had a mobile scanner to help the overflow.


I should just pay three dollars more for the 40 lb bag of cat litter and save myself the aggravation.

It was insane.


Where was I? Oh yeah, I was at Chili's. Mary. Emily.

That's right.

When I asked the girls what was new, these were their answers.

Mary: I'm going to Kenya!
Me: [wide eyed]
Emily: I'm going to Turkey!
Me: [mouth agape] Really? When?

They both proceeded to tell me of the opportunities for next summer that they have been given and are taking advantage of -- both of these ladies are smart, beautiful, and one has a overly "kind" heart, the other one has a heart -- as she always claims, "I'm not that nice."

They are twenty years old -- and adventure ahead of them -- my adventure at that age was more selfish and in the continental United States.... and well.. never mind...

Mary: I will be working in an orphanage.
Me: Awww. But KENYA? Aren't you scared to be so far away?
Mary: Not really. It will be terrific. Africa.
Me: [thinking -- aren't there orphanages a little closer?]

Emily: I will be studying abroad, actually in Italy, but I will travel through Turkey for a few days. I'm a little concerned with navigating the airport in Istanbul.
Me: [thinking -- a little? I'd be shaking in my third world sandals]

They both were both so excited; I'm the only one with my mouth agape.

We talked books... Mary's always looking for new titles --- Emily is just finishing some ones.

Emily: Wuthering Heights. I loved it.
Me: Great book. I wanted to shake all of the characters in that novel and put them on timeout: "Quit being so mean and revengeful and stubborn." Tragic, tragic story.
Emily: Definitely tragic.
Mary: Sad. Wuthering Heights is a sad book.

Emily had not taken any English classes this semester, but she was headed to some next semester including "Novel Theory" or is it "Theory of a Novel"?

Theory of a Novel is definitely not a course I am familiar with since I have been out of graduate school for twenty years. When I got my BA and Masters in English, we were limited to 20th Century American novel, Shakespeare, and History of the English language -- at Georgia, they must have over fifty to choose from...

Theory of the Novel?

What could that be?

I hope it's a way of thinking about the novel and its place in history, its impact on culture, and its ability to provide insight into human nature.

This day an age -- it could be anything.

I hadn't heard of "Queer Theory" till one of my former students told me about it. Of course, he attends Georgia Tech... and I dunno.....but he came back and expanded on it for Dr. Parrott and me.


Mary is currently enrolled in four English classes -- I can't remember the names of her courses, but we talked about what she liked and what she didn't. I know she had Shakespeare, the 20th Century British novel, African-American literature, and one more.... but I can't remember what...

<------------- going to Kenya

<------------- going to Turkey

Mary liked all of her Shakespeare (we all chuckled about why Titus Andronicus always has to be included in a Shakespeare course -- Emily concluded "for the boys in the class" LOL -- "it's so bloody -- IMHO -- overrated, but I digress),

but she wasn't that wild about the 20th Century British novel -- but we did talk briefly about Handful of Dust by Evelyn Waugh.

Me: I love that book.
Mary: Well, I liked the discussion; we talked about God, but the story is so sad.
Me: Mary, literature is full of sad stories. Life is sad. Who wants happy endings in their reading?
Mary: I do.
Emily: I don't.
Me: LOL.. me either.

We laughed again because we three have been having this same conversation for five years. This all goes back to when both of these girls were in my English class, and Mary, with the heart of hurt for others, and Emily with just a heart, and I would argue about whether something was sad.

When the girls asked me what I was doing, I said, "read my blog. It's not sad."

Muah, Emily and Mary.



Are you out there?

You and I used to have this same conversation when you were in my tenth grade English class.

Shelley: Are we ever gonna read something that has a happy ending?
Me: No.
Shelley: Why? I just want to read something happy.
Me: Not in this class. Get yourself a romance novel.
Shelley: Argh.

*shakes her skinny fist in the air*

*shakes mine back at her*

Is anyone out there reading a happy book? If so, let me know.... I'm currently reading Jack London in Paradise.........

and, he ain't happy.
Just sayin'.


  1. I know there is a margin problem on this blog.. so no comments, okay?

  2. I'm out here alright.

    And I'm embarrassed to say the last book I read for fun was Twilight. I couldn't make it all the way through the series; after the second book I wanted to kill myself and every high school girl that might possibly resemble Bella.

    I'm still looking for my happy ending...

  3. I think this blog could have had a happy ending if you had left out the big butts in the Cosco aisle! Shame on you! I miss Mary and Emily! Emily is the only person I know who would be more excited about Turkey than Italy. Huh? Mary with the golden heart will try to CREATE a happy ending in Kenya. I hope someone checks her bag before she departs the country or that orphanage is going to be at least one baby short. We'll name him Candide.

  4. Ahh, I missed your blog. I deleted mine and removed myself from the blog world for a while. I am back and you are still funny. :)

    Ah, and I love creepy a-- books and/or sad endings. I think you knew that -- it's why you recommended Other Voices, Other Rooms to me when I was in one of your classes.

    an adoring former student,
    Stephanie Allen (soon to be Madson once my marriage certificate comes in the mail)

  5. CANDIDE!!!! And I will post more later, but that made me laugh so hard I almost fell out of my chair. Mary and Candide. tehe.

  6. Well, you certainly helped produce students with ambition! Wow, Kenya and Turkey. Good luck to Mary and Emily!

    Why is it that most of us are pulled towards the bleak and tragic? Maybe to make our own lives seem more chipper?

    "See, Own Life? When compared to Samuel Beckett's fallen characters, you're simply heavenly!"

    Though I haven't read it, this was recommended:

    The Book Of Happy Endings, by Elise Valmorbida.

    I'm hoping, despite the "morbid" in the author's last name, that it lives up to it's title...

  7. Oh! And big butts at Costco must be a nationwide epidemic...

  8. I have a theory about happy vs sad endings in fiction. Remind me to bore you with that sometime. I read this blog too late, and my brain is working even slower than normal. *hauls my fat Costco butt to bed*

  9. Prepare to be bored: http://dreamquest62.blogspot.com/2010/02/and-now-for-something-completely.html