Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Things that Drive You Crazy.
W.E. Dubois reading.
This is not about purses or necks.
I was reading Nora Ephron's book I FEEL BAD ABOUT MY NECK, (which I do, too, as well as most of the stuff that sits under it). I picked it up at a garage sale for $2.
In it, she tells the reader, (after criticizing a friend out for buying a ridiculously expensive purse), that the only handbag she herself carries is a $26 dollar plastic bag in blue and yellow. Sometime easily replaced, practical, non-destructible.
Now tell me what person making less than a bazillion dollars a year, and spending a million dollars on shoes and clothes, would feel as self-righteous and immune to criticism as Ephron in revealing this. Is this supposed to make the "little people" like her?
Only a rich woman can get away with carrying such a thing. The average Joanne, the plumber, wearing $30 jeans from the Gap, white running shoes, a sweatshirt and carrying an extra 25 pounds, cannot carry such a purse. I've tried it (using the Bouchercon tote bag) and it doesn't look good with a skirt and sweater, believe me. People did not congratulate me on my thriftiness even once.
A bag like Nora's only looks good with Dior. Or with those hard-to- spell shoes Carrie Bradshaw always wore.
I can't finish the Ephron book because I've lost all respect for her as an essayist and person. My husband advises me to give her a chance--that's she just being funny. That if Meg Ryan made this statement in WHEN HARRY MET SALLY, I might have thought it cute. If Streep said it in JULIA AND JULIE, I would have been charmed. I doubt it.
Do statements like Ephron's drive you crazy? When reading a non-fiction book, does the personality of the writer sometimes get in your way? This happens to me a lot. Just like certain people would do better to stay off of talks shows, others should refrain from writing books about themselves. Be mysterious, be enigmatic, just don't open up.
I'm doing it now, aren't I? I'm one of those people who should keep her mouth closed.