>My friends and family know that when they’ve got literature questions, I’ve got answers. For example: Remember that old book you checked out of the library in 11th grade and it had a greenish-gray cover, and it was about some doctor or lawyer marrying a younger woman who was a little on the trashy side? Sure, call me up. Yes, it’s the middle of the night all over Korea, but so what? Cass Timberlane, by Sinclair Lewis, and he was a judge. And I was a sophomore in college. Yawn. You’re welcome.
My latest lit question also concerns 20th century American literature, and it’s a doozy. Before I begin, let me reassure you that I’ve got full permission to blog about this:
Friend: You know Boo Radley, right?
Me: You mean the Boo Radley from To Kill A Mockingbird, right?
Friend: Yes, of course! How many Boo Radleys are out there?
Me: I think there’s an alternative band called that. What about Boo Radley?
Friend: You read that book, right?
Me: Sure, junior high.
Friend: Me, too. Get this: Last week [significant other] told me that he understands Boo Radley, that he identifies with Boo Radley. What the hell is that supposed to mean?
Me: I’m not sure. What do you think?
Friend: Well, he’s painfully shy. And he hasn’t worked in a while. Boo didn’t have a job, did he?
Me: Boo was shy, but his problems went way beyond shyness and unemployment.
Friend: Like what?
Me: Well, I can’t remember exactly. I haven’t read To Kill A Mockingbird since 1976.
Friend: Same here. But the thing is, well, ever since he told me that he feels a deep connection with Boo Radley, I feel all…ewww….and…
Me: It’s frosted your libido?
Friend: Yeah. I can’t get Boo out of my mind. He’s starting to look like Boo to me. I mean, it was nice and all that he saved Scout and Jem, but as far as hotness goes, no fucking way, excuse the pun.
Me: I know, Atticus is usually considered the hottie, although I kind of like Heck Tate, the sheriff. I think we should both go out and get copies of this book —
Friend: They have To Kill A Mockingbird in Korea?
Me: Oh yeah, it’s everywhere. I’ll be in Seoul on Friday anyway to get my ballot notarized, and there’s a bookstore down the street from the American embassy. I’ll get a copy and go through and highlight all the parts that mention Boo Radley. You do the same and we’ll compare notes.
Friend: Can you break up with someone over this?
Me: God, this is starting to feel like Seinfeld. Let’s reread first.