Whenever people insist that I will love something, that I can’t live without it, I stubbornly avoid it. I am instantly repulsed and refuse to budge. My reaction, I know, is some sort of leftover adolescent nonsense that I can’t shake – like the occasional chin zit.
But after years of being brow-beaten, harassed, cajoled, put-upon, proselytized to, and arm-twisted, I finally accepted a (free) copy of Eat Pray Love. And, despite all my instincts, I’m reading it.
I realize now that the reason that I abhor most modern books written by women – some strange self-hating weirdness, I always thought – is their inevitably breezy, cheerful and forced “irony.” Read Eat Pray Love if you want to see what I mean. It’s irritating and even unbearable, though (as in this case) sometimes, no matter how unreadable the prose, the story keeps you going. So, as if I was faced with a tablespoon of Castor oil, I’m going to squeeze my eyes shut and choke it down.
Why can’t everyone write like Mary Gaitskill? Hell, why can’t I?