Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Reading, Not Writing: The Update

My Book Group met on Monday, sans moi. Worked late again, due to a huge project that has consumed our entire team and even required a Saturday work day for all of us. D. worked all day Sunday as well, while I took photos (see below) and avoided laundry. I did vacuum and put away serving pieces from New Year's Eve, right on schedule.

So, you're wondering how I'm doing with War and Peace The Brothers K? I'm presently up to page 161. Not bad, considering the story (subject matter: family relationships and BASEBALL) is moving along at a painfully slow pace. It's all about the backstory, and while I'm certain every scene, every character description, and every baseball game play-by-play commentary is there because it needs to be, the story is moving about as quickly as my 89-year-old neighbor's daily walk around the block. Slow and steady.

My Book Group friend, Amy (the one who chose this monstrosity), stopped by today. "How was it?" I asked.

"Well, nobody read the book, except me, and I stayed up until 3 in the morning the night before to finish it." (Amy doesn't work right now and just returned from a month in Brazil, but I don't hate her or anything.)

A-ha. I'm not alone in my failure to live up to a commitment.

The difference between the other women in the group and my own twisted self is that they have long since moved on to their next read. I'm still nose first in The Brothers K every night. I have to finish it. I have to finish every book I start. Just have to.

Amy says it gets much better in the second half. "Can't put it down," she said.

I had no plans to do so.


Mrs. G. said...

I like your stick-with-it-ness. I have been known to abandon a book now and again. I usually know in the first 75-100 pages. When you finish, let us know the verdict.

Anonymous said...

Lol, it sounds like you are being tortured! Isn't reading supposed to be an enjoyable process??
I hope it does get better!!!

Mary Alice said...

Hi - I was afraid you might not be back to see my reply to you on my blog and thought I would try to e-mail you, but you don't have one may delete it from this comment section once you get it has nothing to do with your post and may really confuse your readers!

Claire, I don’t think any person, parent or not, would ever say what you do ISN’T important and I can see now how my statement that parenting is the single most important thing could have bothered you. Please accept my apologies. That was certainly not the spirit with which I intended my post.

I have two siblings who do not have children, one by choice and one because of medical issues. I do not think their lives are lacking or that what they have chosen to do with their lives is less than those of us who have had families. Their lives are filled with joy and with fulfilling work.

I am saying is that when you are a parent, parenting usurps whatever other responsibilities you have in your life….no matter how important those responsibilities are to you or how they define who you are as a person.

My husband has a very important career; many people depend on him and in his ability to do what he does. He does it well and he is proud of his ability to do it. What he does has changed lives and saved lives…but still…. if he failed his children, I know that would weigh more heavily on him than any successes or failures he might see in his career.

Though, this post was about what virtues we try to instill in our children, it could be as easily reinterpreted as virtues we strive for in our own lives.

Again, I am so sorry if my statement made "the non-parent in you cringe"


Claire B. said...

Well, if Mrs. G. and Hay are confused, they'll just go read your comments! And I added my email to my profile so that's remedied. Thanks for the kindness and I love that we can all chat about whatever's on our mind. No apologies needed!! You're the coolest.

Anonymous said...

Claire, my far away friend, how is it that you know me so well? Off to read Mary Alice's post ;)