FOUR THINGS TO ASK A STRANGER (almost a parody)

Welcome to Mary Anne Radmacher's blog.

One way to get to know a person you've just met is to ask them to tell you about their favorite friends. It's said that a person essentially becomes an aggregate of the five people with whom they spend the most time.

There's another telling question to ask a stranger. It's all about a book.

1) Is there one book that you have re-read and will read again (and again)?
2) What is the most recent book that you've read and what stands out to you most?
3) What is the title of a book you recommend most often to friends?
4) What was the last book you read that made you so sad when it came to the end? (Because you wanted to keep on reading, not because the ending was sad!).

If the person you are just getting to know has never re-read a book, can't remember what stood out from the last book they read, doesn't recommend books to friends and has never felt sad to stop reading an excellent book...

I suggest that you stop conversing with them. And, perhaps, run. Kidding (not kidding). Perhaps you might consider striking up a conversation with someone else that you might want to get to know. AND start THAT conversation off by recommending a book you've recently read...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

queen of cupcakes recommends novel

my friend, kathleen, the queen of cupcakes (that's another story) highly recommended sy montgomery's THE GOOD GOOD PIG. yes! i said to myself. just what i need to punctuate my recovering from pneumonia with periods of appropriate rest. a good novel! off i go to the library. no good. not on the shelf. it's on order and i can begin with my restful reading breaks by the end of the week. but. "i'm here...i might as well go to the fiction section and find the novel for the next few days." so i go. i begin in C's. and before i know it, i find myself in the T's. "the t's already, and still no novel in my hand," i exclaim, with chagrin.

just one step to the right puts me in the section that i mostly called home. BIOGRAPHY AND MEMOIR. ahhhhh. yes. these come home with me, readily. MY INVENTED COUNTRY - A NOSTALGIC JOURNEY THROUGH CHILE by Isabel Allende; DOG YEARS, by mark doty; LIVING FOR CHANGE - AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY, by Grace Lee Boggs; and HERSELF by Madeleine L'Engle. Ah, Madeleine..."obedience is an unpopular word nowadays, but the artist must be obedient to the work, whether it be a symphony, a painting, or a story for a small child." thank you for those words and how i miss your breath on the planet, madeleine. obedience to the work. so that assuages me as i again fail to manage to pick up the novel to stir me. truth, history and reflection always manages to lift my eyes and challenge my thinking. it's nearly dependable. so. obedient to my work as an artist is to embrace the views of others and see if i can see the way they see. learn from their view on the world.

my friend, kathleen, draws my sights up at many levels. THE GOOD PIG will delight, i'm sure. and she's inspired me at another level. kathleen who flew just last month in a twirl skirt with martini glasses all over...has allowed me to imagine a wardrobe with a higher level of quirk in it. and i have acquired a vintage sun dress in an auction on ebay. and. more good news. the 50's style twirl skirt can double as a day tent for me and nine of my dearest friends if i want to serve up a picnic in the hot, mid day . quirk? got plenty of these days. i simply seem to be a little short of cupcakes and novels.

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