Monday, January 22, 2007
We had a book group last Saturday night on The Emperor's Children by Claire Messud. It was my first book club and a very pleasant experience.
One woman was much too enthusiastic about the whole book club concept and wanted to know who had read the book.
"Did you read it?" she demanded from me early on.
"Yes I did -but I don't think a lot of people finished it" I responded, wondering who the hell she was but more than willing to rat people out.
"Oh" she said in a fright, "People have to read the book." She raced around the party looking for the remiss book club members "Did you read it?" she asked an equally confused man I'd never seen before. Their voices trailed off.
"I didn't read it," said Ken and took a drink. He had waited to approach until after she had left.
"I figured as much", I replied.
When I visited Ken's apartment several years ago he had two paperback books on his window sill, there were no other books in the place.
"Did you read all those?" I had asked him, pointing to the two books, he looked at the books and seemed confused as to why they were there and went back to watching golf on TV. Some people aren't readers.
There were 16 people discussing the book which seems like too many, especially when you throw liberal drinking into the mix.
Joe hadn't read the book but that didn't keep him from discussing it, and drunkeenly assault anyone that disagreed with him "9/11 changed everyone!!" he barked at us. It was quiet as we all tried to figure out what in the Sam Hill he was talking about.
Chuck spent most of the night explaining what happened in the book to the prettiest and youngest woman there, K- and Ken's wife, Felicia.
"Does it seem like Chuck is always trying to pick up our wives?" I asked Ken.
"Yup, everytime we get together", Ken responded. We watched for a minute and then went to the kitchen to get more snacks.
K- got tired and wanted to leave.
Joe's wife offered to host the next book club and would let us know the book.
Ken promised to read it but asked that it be at least under 300 pages.
Joe got mad at me, for some reason, and flipped me off
It's funny, many years ago I used to be chased by the police with some of these people now we are discussing books. There were no fights, no tears, no drunken hook-ups. Where have all the good times gone?