The other day I claimed that some of my favorite books ever were written by men and that at least some of those books had few to zero female characters. My friend turningreen said “inquiring minds want to know” what those books might be. Well, I’ll tell you not only what they might be, but what they are. So without further ado, inquiring minds…
My Favorite Books Written By Men
1. The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene – No major female characters, but some relatively important minor ones.
2. Never Let Me Go and Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro – The narrator of Never Let Me Go is a woman, and Remains of the Day has a major female character (if you can characterize any Ishiguro character who is not the narrator as “major”), but he has written other books about men that I also enjoyed.
3. Life of Pi by Yann Martel – No major female characters
4. The Plague by Albert Camus – No major female characters
5. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne – Hey, there’s a woman in this one.
6. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens – Lots of female characters, but they’re either falling in love or knitting, so…
7. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad – One female character, who doesn’t even get a name.
And there it is.
I woke up with an earache and a sore throat today, so I am feeling less-than-ambitious, blog-wise and housework-wise. So what do I attempt to do first? I think we all know the answer to that question. I attempted to sleep until 10, but the kids wanted breakfast, so I had to wake up at eight-something. The kids are off school today, for reasons I do not know. Mine is not to question why.
Later, I believe, I shall attempt to do some laundry.
Mister Bubby didn’t place at the science fair this year, which was very disappointing for him. So he has decided to have a family science fair. We all have to present our projects in two weeks. Princess Zurg and I are lab partners. Does either of us know crap about science? Did I graduate from school and become a housewife so that I could do science projects? I even married a scientist so that I would never have to help a child with a science project. And for all my careful planning, this is my reward.
Now that I only have one child not in school full-time, and even that child is in school some of the time, I have more time, theoretically, to volunteer at my children’s schools. Have I done any volunteering this year? Negative, Rampart. This is in part because I have grown so accustomed to not volunteering that it doesn’t even occur to me to volunteer. But Mister Bubby’s BFF’s mom is a major school volunteering person, and every other parent I know volunteers, even if they have younger children still at home during the day. They get babysitters so they can volunteer. I have never wanted to do this because a) despite my extensive experience, I am still not very good with children, and b) during the first few years of Princess Zurg’s school career, I spent a lot of time in principals’ offices and in IEP meetings talking about how poorly she was doing, so to me a good day is one where I don’t have to go inside the school building. I like those good days. I never get tired of them.
So my point, I guess, is that I still don’t volunteer, but now I feel guilty about it. Unfortunately, I am so used to feeling guilty about one thing or another that one more thing doesn’t make as much of a difference as it should.
Yeah, that’s all I got. I’m going to take some ibuprofen and possibly a shower. If you want to entertain me, you can leave me a comment about your favorite male authors, or you can tell me your weekend plans, or you can tell me a joke, if you know one. Gentle readers, au revoir.