blighted sense of place

2002-11-15 - 9:58 a.m.


I've been reading two diaries, lately. One is about a person in her first year of law school ( and one is about a person applying for graduate school in, I think, English lit. (

They're both intensely entertaining.

They both also make me feel old and tired and sad that I'm 43, not 24.

But that's okay.

There's a party tonight! I'm interested in parties, lately. It's a party for parents at Maddy's school. But it really is a party -- there will be drinks, and no kids, and gossip and intrigue.

Half the important characters will be missing -- their kids have graduated. That's sad, actually. Two of them will be sorely missed, in fact. They're sort of my partners in crime. I'm hoping others will be willing to step up to the plate.

There's a party coming up next Friday, too, but that may not be as fun. It's for a sort of serious-minded person. I have little patience for that sort of Mrs. Jellyby serious-mindedness.

Hmmm -- I'm just regretting the fact that I don't have a small child -- again -- because I was thinking that someone I know, who has a 5 year old, would make a good partner in crime at the first party I was talking about.

How pathetic I am! It reminds me of when I graduated from high school. I was actually distraught, because I knew it would take a long time to find a group of friends like that again. (I was right.)

So now I'm going to be kicked out of the elementary school crowd in the same way.

Hmm. I guess I should be moving on, but Nora's middle school classmates parents just don't seem to be as fun.

This is horribly pathetic. I know. I think I even know how to fix it. So there --

In other news, I heard this report of NPR this morning about Western writers and their sense of place.

I sort of don't get it. Actually, I am sort of attached to North Dakota. I spent my summers there, growing up, and it does have some wierd kind of hold on me. I guess that's what they're talking about. The landscape, I mean.

But I certainly don't feel that way about Montana, and I really don't feel that way about California, at all.

But I really don't get this whole thing about "western writers and their sense of the land." Lots of writers have a sense of the land. Annie Proulx wrote about Newfoundland (and then about Wyoming). Ethan Frome -- that certainly has a bleak New England sense about it, and H.P. Lovecraft has a definite Providence sensibility, and Nathaniel Hawthorne seems to get Massachusetts, as does Thoreau. What about all those Last of the Mohicans books about upstate New York? What about the Corrections, which has a very clear sense of the Midwest?

I mean, what's the big deal?

Maybe it's because, in the places they are really talking about, there are so few people. ??

I don't know, but it bugs me.

OKay, then -- I'me going to go check out my sense of place at the cafe, downstairs. I'll let you know how attached I feel.

Yeah, right.

out of print - new releases

find me! - 2008-02-12
where I've gone - 2008-02-07
Where I've gone - 2008-02-05
where I've gone - 2008-02-01
New - 2008-02-01


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