Last night was book club night. It's a breath of fresh air--often coffee and brownie scented. I love what we read--random, interesting, varied; I love the women--random, interesting, and varied. We get caught up on movies, books, and each other. And Debby S. is there! What more could I ask for!
Our selection this time was A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and while we discussed poverty, feminism, and families, what has stayed with me to this morning was a comment by S.C. She brought up the realness of Francie's world and how (if we were to teach this to today's high schoolers, especially the ones she & I have taught) that aspect of community and reality would be so "unreal" to them, maybe more so than the poverty. In our world of TV, computers, BLOGS, etc. we are so distant, insulated, and living in un-reality. I know this world is but a shadow of things to come, but I wonder if we are becoming more and more shadowy. Is my community the Starbucks barrista who remembers my name and drink order? The friends who comment on my blog? When's the last time we met for coffee or had a phone conversation? What is real? Am I becoming any more "of substance," able to walk on the blades of grass in the intense sun like the narrator in The Great Divorce? Can I handle real joy and survive real pain?