IN THE PAST there was no internet...
Book 4 Complete! I just finished Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. Whew! OK, to be fair, I started it in ’04, but I read over a 1/3 of it this year, which would still be more pages than most other books, so I’m counting it, dammit. 838 pages people, in large format paperback with tiny type. That’s not counting the footnotes, of which there were many, many, many.
I loved the book, though. It took me a long time to et through it, and I would sometimes have to put it down for a while and read something else because, well, heavy book with deep, heavy writing. I still really liked it. The people are so real and even though I was looking at it from a modern perspective, I could totally see the characters’ perspectives and motives even when the social mores are no longer applicable to me. I also love that there is no “bad guy.” It’s just a bunch of people trying to live as best they can and some of them act without knowing all the facts and some of them can be very selfish or very stubborn or dense, but they are not bad people, they’re flawed, just like everyone else. Anna isn’t a trashy home wrecker, she’s a woman trapped into a loveless, arranged marriage who falls passionately in love for the first time in her life and can’t see any course of action other than the one she chooses. Her husband isn’t an unfeeling asshole, he’s just a little socially inept and he has never been in love. It was never an option in his world, so he has no idea what she’s going through or what she’s feeling. Also, her lover Vronsky is a bit of an arrogant ass, but he never ever intends to hurt anyone he’s just so used to getting his way that he doesn’t see why this should be any different, and he truly can not see how this will affect Anna’s life the once she leaves her husband.
I also like how a good portion of this book is not about the people involved but about how “society” deals with what’s going on. The people making the biggest deal about everything are the people who should be minding their own knitting and shutting up, and that’s the writer’s point. I like that.
Well, so much for my book list taking up an entry. I’m proud of myself for this one, though.
Man, I just want today to end. I’m really frustrated with the higher ups today. Production Guy especially. I have done everything for three orders for him this week, including finding stuff we didn’t have and putting off doing all my work for this. So when he came in a ten til three and told me he needed something else I told him it would have to wait a few minutes because I was in the middle of putting something together for one of my customers which I will get credit for and who has been waiting patiently to hear from me. Hew then tells me that he is leaving in a few minutes so I have to drop everything and do this for him. He then says you know, everyone here is busy, blah, blah. BUT! Do you know why he had to leave? Because he always goes home at 3pm. Yeah, we are all equally busy around here. Whatever. We really need to get this guy a secretary. Or a serf, either way.
Times like this always remind me of a friend of mine that I went on tour with. Whenever we would have a legitimate problem with how business was being conducted our Production Manager would always say, “Well, it’s better now than in the past.” Which is a pretty dick answer, honestly. So one day, my lovely friend just lost it. She started walking up and down the isle of the bus going, “Well, if the past is our point of reference for how to treat people, well hell, then, in THE PAST there was slavery so why don’t we just go and get some slaves to work this stupid tour. Or, in THE PAST they forced Chinese people to build railroads, so why don’t we just go back to that? Huh? I’ll tell you why! Because it’s WRONG. Just because something was ok in the past doesn’t make it ok now, God Dammit. So, what, just because we haven’t been sold into slavery we’re supposed to just sit back and say, Well, hell, this beats picking cotton! What are we complaining about? No, this is wrong and just because it was done this way “in the past” does not make it not wrong now…” She went on for a little bit longer, but you get the point. You also need to picture all of this being said by a 5’5”, 25 year old Danish-American woman who looks about 16 with her hair in pigtails walking up and down the isle of a tour bus still wearing the same clothes from the day before. Really, very entertaining, and yet so true.
Well, I think it’s time to post this baby and get ready to shut down.