Prunes and Prism

RULES FOR YOUNG LADIES: Some arch advice on snagging a husband. Exercising the mouth into a pretty shape through repetition of certain words seems to have been an indoor sport for young nineteenth-century girls; in Little Dorrit, Charles Dickens' overly bred girl repeats, "papa, potatoes, poultry, prunes and prism." (

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Better Than the Movie

I've just finished the new book from Joyce Carol Oates (the writer so prolific that she may not in fact be a writer at all, but a head in a jar). It's set in the suburbs of upstate New York, and I realized that while I was reading the parts that take place in the narrator's mother's house, I was picturing the first suburban house I grew up in. I was six; it was a two-story brick house on a corner lot. Then I realized that whenever I read a book about suburbia, I picture it happening in that house. Does anybody else do this?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

the humorless feminist

1:02 PM  

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