…Part of me wanted to make that my entire entry, just for the awkwardness, but that part of me is a jerk, frankly, and I wouldn’t really do that to you, friends. You know that. Anyway, the article talks all about issues faced when in a book club. The nut graf is this: Yes, it’s a nice, high-minded idea to join a book group, a way to make
friends and read books that might otherwise sit untouched. But what
happens when you wind up hating all the literary selections — or the
other members? Breaking up isn’t so hard to do when it means freedom
from inane critical commentary, political maneuvering, hurt feelings,
bad chick lit and even worse chardonnay.
The article goes on to cite a number of women who left their book groups for various reasons (not reading the types of books they liked, not being allowed to talk about politics, only talking about politics, discussions of poopy diapers overtaking anything else, etc), but also talks about how the number of groups (which stands, apparently, somewhere between 4 and 5 million) tend to increase during hard economic times, most likely due to the solidarity and free-ish wine.
But why are we still talking about that when we can just as easily talk about me?
I, friends, have never been a part of a book club. Some of the editorial staff at Boston Magazine have an appealing group that they call book club, but it involves magazine articles and leaving work early on a Friday to drink. And all the other ones I know about (two, actually) are girls-only, and unlike that guy who ended up suing so he could go to Wellesley College and document the orgies for Rolling Stone, I have no motivation to interrupt their single-sex solidarity.
As for the more important question: “Kevin, would you even want to join a book club if one was made available to you?” I remain balanced precariously on the non-electric part of the fence. One could argue that I just spent the last three years of my life in a high-minded $30K a year book club that also involved writing, and I certainly don’t miss the infighting, and the vicious passive aggression, and that harrowingly angry young lady who told me she couldn’t read my stuff anymore bc I “kept doing the same not-funny bulls***”, but I do miss that rare class when everyone actually got along, and the talks would be productive, and the points would be thoughtful, and everyone would retire to The Tam post-class to speculate about who was sleeping with who and lose to a group of Trivia Night ringers clearly using some sort of web-phone.
But most importantly, where, friends, do you fall on the book club debate? Are you in a club? Do you like it? Do you non-like it? Is there a particularly compelling anecdote that will serve as a great example of your opinion and is shorter than the average Tom-based comment (jokes, Tom, just jokes)?
If so, please place your comment in the overhead bin with the wheels sticking out, as to give other commenters room. We’ve got a very full flight this evening.
Young MC (Again)