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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

and now for something a little different

This is what the forward of the book I'm currently reading states:

I was not abused, abandoned, or locked up as a child. My parents were not alcoholics, nor were they ever divorced or dead. We did not live in poverty, or in misery, or in an exotic country. I am not a misunderstood genius, a former child celebrity, or the child of a celebrity. I am not a drug addict, sex addict, food addict, or recovered anything. If indeed I had a past life, I have no recollection of who I was.

I have not survived against all odds.
I have not lived to tell.
I have not lived the extraordinary.

This is my story.

June 2004

There's also a Reader's Agreement at the beginning which asks me, among other things, to agree to no pretend half-reading of the book while ordering takeout food, to agree that playwright should be spelled playwrite, to agree that while some women may look sophisticated wearing a shawl others look foolish, and to agree that while black is technically the absence of all colour, it makes more sense for it to be all colours combined. On the copyright page it tells me that it is not responsible for the weather, the scalding nature of soup, or for the short window of time between bananas not being ripe enough, and being rotten. These items, by the way, are in tiny print and easy to miss, so I'm pleased that I caught them.

What is this book I'm referring to? Why, Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life of course. In it the author tells about the moments and emotions of her life in delightful and various-length alphabetized entries from A to Z. Now I can't seem to get very far because every time I start a new page I realize that I don't want to just READ this book, I want to HAVE it. So I keep putting it down thinking that I might as well return it to the library and wait until I have my own copy. And it occurred to me too that what I find so appealing about the book (apart from the fact that dysfunction does not appear to play a role) is that not only is it an entertaining and random (yet organized—woohoo!) hodgepodge of admissions, but it's the type of book I would have wanted to write myself. Could SEE myself writing in fact.

Now, how does that Edward Gorey line go again?
Ah yes:

Books. Cats. Life is sweet.


Anonymous krissa said...

This book sounds awesome! I love her forward. :) And you know, it does sound like something you could have written. It's a brilliant idea though and she seems very witty from what I read in your post. I'll have to check it out someday.

July 11, 2007 2:05 p.m.

Anonymous krissa said...

Good grief!! About 10 minutes ago I realized that I wanted to clarify my earlier comment to this post. It has taken me those whole 10 minutes to get to where I can even try to comment again...so maybe it is my computer and not blogspot that is the problem? ... Well, when I said her book sounds like something you could have written, I meant the style and humor are so similar to your own. It seems her childhood was much less "eventful" than yours. ...Now, wish me much luck because I am going to try to post this comment now. :)

July 11, 2007 4:55 p.m.

Blogger KJ's muse said...

Hey Krissa,

Sorry you had trouble leaving your comment -- it's frustrating I know. And yeah, I realized what you were getting at earlier. The author admits in her book that she was never interested in writing fiction, and tended to gravitate toward short, random (often list-based!) pieces, so it sounds like we have that in common. It's so cool when you run across others whose minds operate similarly to yours! Or scary, of course, depending on your POV. Snort.

July 11, 2007 8:40 p.m.

Anonymous krissa said...

Another of those *coincidences*. They're everywhere!

July 12, 2007 10:27 a.m.

Blogger Miss Sara said...

Whoa. I totally want to read this book now. You should write book reviews.


July 14, 2007 2:49 p.m.

Blogger KJ's muse said...

Thanks Jen. Maybe I'll post it on Amazon!

Two funny things:

a) I totally sucked at writing book reports when I was in school because I could never figure out what to say except for whether I liked the book or not.

b) I almost included in this review that I thought that YOU especially would like this book, but didn't want to single anyone out.


July 15, 2007 10:54 p.m.


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