Driving and more


In driving news, this is a photo of one of Adam’s favorite cars, a BMW 2002. It is very cute and mod. Anyway, I show this picture because we rented a car a couple of weekends ago, and the only car Zipcar had in the lot was a BMW (though of newer vintage) and I drove it back from the far reaches of Queens back, and Adam thought he was going to die. As he is not a driving instructor, he would be like, “Now do that, you know what I mean!!” And I would be screaming back, “No! I have no idea what you mean! We’re exiting!! I can’t switch back! Argh!!” Anyway, after one treacherous highway lane change, I saw the guy who kindly let me squeeze into his exit lane laughing in my rear view mirror. I was grouchy, because, yes, I am a bad/beginning driver and yes, I am driving a BMW. Shush.

In knitting news, I am still knitting my socks. I find knitting the two-socks-on-one-needle method a little boring because even though your socks are more even, your progress is SO slow, due to one row on one sock and then the other. <–This is potentially the most boring and obvious sentence I have ever written. Only thing that would make it more boring would be a Facebook quiz: What type of sock knitter are you?

In reading news, I have finished Middlemarch. It was not unlike Harry Potter 7, in that after MANY hundreds of pages of suffering, all of the characters basically live happily ever after. I was like WTF George Eliot?!? I have been slogging through hundreds of pages of Dorothea’s self-righteous suffering for it to all be solved in the matter of three pages? Couldn’t this have happened on page 20?! In the middle of reading Middlemarch, I went to see Bruno with my English-major friend (now turned corporate lawyer, of course), and I mentioned that I was reading Middlemarch. He said, “I never could decide whether I liked Dorothea or not,” which I think is an apt summation of the entire book. Before Harry Potter 7 was published, I promoted my own theory to everyone who would listen: namely that Harry Potter had to give up his magical powers (or “die as a wizard”) in order for him to save the world. I think this would have been a significant sacrifice, as well as following the plot structure of every one of these monomyth books. However, J.K. Rowling decided not to listen to my awesome advice and instead go for the most bourgeois happy ending ever.

This is essentially the same flaw of Middlemarch. If you have made certain characters suffer for many hundreds of pages, I think readers do not expect a rapid and easily wrapped up ending. Readers want sacrifice! Or at least I do. In my opinion, Dorothea, the main character, basically sacrificed nothing. Yes, she was married to a horrible ugly old man for a year or so, and then had to spend another year as a rich widow, but by the time she got married again she was (a) young–a widow at 21, so she was, omg, 22 at the time of her second marriage, (b) had an independent income (as part of the plot she had to give up her rich dead husband’s income, but she still had 700 pounds a year to live on–I have no idea what that means, but it seems, in the context of the book, to be fairly middle-class), (c) still fertile and gives birth to two sons after her second marriage, (d) continues to be the heir to her uncle’s vast estate, and (e) gets to marry her true love, another self-righteous character, who also happens to be young and handsome. I believe this is a plot that my college roommate would have described with the phrase “Hear me playing the world’s smallest violin.”

Anyway. I am now reading Moneyball, Michael Lewis’s book about the Oakland A’s. This better be an improvement over Middlemarch.

Posted in book reviews, Uncategorized at August 18th, 2009. Trackback URI: trackback

5 Responses to “Driving and more”

  1. August 19th, 2009 at 7:53 am #Caren

    That’s a cool photo!
    I sent an email to your yahoo account, cuz that’s the address I have…so…read it!

  2. August 19th, 2009 at 4:14 pm #Phoe

    Great car!

    I totally thought Harry was a Horcrux and yes, should have died. I tried Middlemarch once and promptly gave up.

  3. August 19th, 2009 at 9:51 pm #Grace

    I hated the last Harry Potter. I almost chucked it out the subway doors on several occasions. I still get angry thinking about what a cop out the entire thing was so I’ll stop right now.

  4. August 20th, 2009 at 4:27 pm #Ivete

    Oh Moneyball is such a fun read! It goes quick too, but just wait for the random stats discussions you’re about to get into with anyone else who’s read it . . . THOSE don’t go quick!

  5. August 20th, 2009 at 6:53 pm #George Eliot

    Come on, not everyone lives happily ever after. That banker guy kind of ends up a loser, doesn’t he? And the doctor guy has to spend the rest of his life catering to the whims of wealthy snobs, with a shrewish wife who is only going to get older and nastier.