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easy and beautiful !

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Wednesday
Dec162009

Questions, questions, and more questions.

Hi, 

Wasn’t that class fun? And isn’t Mark P. a cutie? And isn’t he a little too young to be thinking of writing a memoir? What would he be remembering – trauma in his crib? Unless he experienced a memorable life altering episode (like an affair with an older woman perhaps) some time between kindergarten and now. I hope that hasn’t already happened. I’m sure we’ll find out. Francine was in her element, wasn’t she? Making sure she sat at the head of the table with her back to the wall (must be a teacher precaution), eyes flitting from face to face making sure we were all paying attention and no one talking out of turn (especially you!). I was thinking about our next assignment. Remember how in the last class, we always seemed to get the assignment wrong? We’d do our own thing and it would infuriate her. She wouldn’t last a day teaching high school. But I do love the unexpected and the drama. Probably the kids say the same thing about me ...  Let’s see if we can drive our crazy English teacher mad.  

Not sure if I love xmas or hate it. I know I used to love it. For some reason, it should all be easier now that the kids are older, but it seems more stressful. I think when there are children around, everything pretty well revolves around them and as parents we control it all. Now, there are too many schedules and we are the ones who have to fit in. Once we finish school on Friday, I’ll feel better, although I think I’m/we’re ready: the tree is up (actually fills the house with the smell of xmas), Dan has the outside finished (garland and lights), and I have most of the gifts wrapped, well actually bagged. It seems wrapping paper is passé. 

That’s pretty heavy stuff about little Candy and The Dark Space. Out of the mouths of babes … if her mother only knew what secrets she tells. I wonder what it’s all about. Fascinating, but sad at the same time.

Any plans for ‘bumping into’ Francis in the next few weeks?  I meant to ask why your sister entered the convent at 12. Wasn’t there an age factor?  How wrong to even consider taking girls that young. I guess the good Ursulines liked to mould them at an early age. I do remember our nuns ‘recruiting’ girls, but only in grade 12, I thought. My best friend at the time (the one I met this summer at Niagara Falls) was a favourite of theirs. But she got pregnant (and not by the Holy Spirit) and had to leave school before graduation. That was the end of her religious career.
 
After reading The Bishop’s Man (great timing) it is interesting to follow the 53 million dollar inquiry into the pedophile ring in Cornwall. The Catholic Church is being criticized for ’reluctance to act’. (sic/sick) Where have we heard that before? As far as the novel is concerned, I did find the main character, Duncan MacAskill, credible, but not memorable. On the other hand, I can remember almost everything about Sir Edward Feathers in Gardam’s FILTH. Maybe it isn’t fair to compare writers like this. After all one either enjoys a book or doesn’t. I just question the idea of all these prizes.
 

By the way, I am reading Gardam’s short stories and they are good overall, but in this case, I’m not quite as enthralled as you are about her writing. I find she uses such strange wording and sentence structure, which seem overdone at times. No doubt she has earned the right to experiment with language and will not be chastised for it. I’d like to try imitating one or two sentences for the class just to see what Francine says. 

I read a most interesting article in the U of T magazine on Agatha Christie and Alzheimer’s – the researcher found that there was a “staggering drop in vocabulary” in her second to last novel (she was 81 then), a “31% drop from 18 years earlier when she wrote Destination Unknown.”  And, also mentioned, was the fact that there was evidence of the disease in Iris Murdoch’s written work before her doctor diagnosed her.   

Not a happy note to end on, but interesting nonetheless. Have a good last few days. Maybe we can plan a little outing sometime next week. Yes?

Your-comrade-in-writing-Sarah

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