Miscellaneous Mishegoss

I finished “Olive, Again” by Elizabeth Strout and it just ripped my heart out. I was only reading maybe 20 or 30 pages a day because I found it so wrenching, then last night I read the last 200 pages, because I had to. A number of Strout’s stories and characters are based in Maine and many show up here in “Olive, Again”.   You need not have read her other books to enjoy ‘Olive, Again’ tho I really do think you might enjoy this more if you read ‘Olive Kitteridge’ first. Still…Elizabeth Strout speaks to me more than any other writer I can think of. Or should I say, any other novelist. There are poets who I swear have read my mind and heart and soul despite having died long before I was born.

And that’s why I dislike ebooks – I got this one from my local library, using Overdrive, and unlike other ebook readers I could not ‘search within the book’ – there were a few lines I wanted to save but neglected to do that when I read them and now I shall have to scan through the entire book to find them. If I had a ‘real’ copy of the book I could have marked the page, underlined the text. Oh, well I shall buy the book when it comes out in paperback – I seem to prefer paperback books these days.

I realized today that when I am stressed it’s like when I used to get migraine headaches – I can’t stand the sound  of people talking. Human voices grate on my nerves, like this. I had one of those ‘episodes’ this morning, not a migraine, but a stress attack and I snapped my husband’s head off and yelled at the cat. Yes, I know the cat doesn’t qualify as a human voice but then again, you have never heard my cat. And she just never effin’ shuts up! If I knew what she wanted I would give it to her, I would, really, I would. Sometimes I know what she wants and them sometimes it is just incessant demands. “What do you want? You’re a cat. I don’t understand you”

Now that ‘the mother‘ has died, I wondered this morning how my father is dealing with that. Have they bumped into each other yet? Is there some holding space for the recently deceased? I was talking to him this morning and he made me drop my earring and then laughed – not a bad laugh but a warm laugh. I didn’t think to ask him about his wife (aka ‘the mother‘).  We used to say that my father died because that was the only way he could get away her. So how does that work now that they are both dead?


6 thoughts on “Miscellaneous Mishegoss

  1. That book sounds pretty incredible! I had to giggle at the cat annoying you because I had the same conversation with Angel this weekend! Oh my Cod, she can be so demanding and annoying! On and on and on and I have no idea what she wants. J found it amusing. I told him that between her vocal demands, Bella always wanting food and Lexi always being my shadow, I need to get away! The only time I’ve been alone lately was an hour in the car this weekend as we drove to Salem in separate cars because I sold my car. I need more alone time than that!

    Interesting thought about how your dad is reacting to his wife showing up again. If you ask him, let us know!


    1. Sometimes what you bring to a book has a huge affect on what you take away from a book. I’m of an age and state of mind that I relate on a very personal level with this this book. Perhaps someone younger might not have the same take-away as I did.

      The difference between pets and human 3 year olds is that – the human will grow up and the pets will be forever 3 years old! Maybe 2 year olds – No, let’s leave it at 3 year olds, they are so exhausting!

      Yeah, I gotta have a chat with my father – my father has been gone some 47 years, he has had time to adapt and mellow, June OTOH – well, let’s not even think about it.


    1. I don’t think I would apply ‘evil’ to anything or anyone. She was a narcissist/sociopath – meaning she was deeply mentally ill. She knew what she did and said was wrong yet she did it anyway because it served some purpose for her. Sometimes those purposes were practical – she didn’t want any more children than the one she felt obligated to have so she tried to get rid of the subsequent ones – she was successful on some occasions, not successful on others. She lied just because it was fun – and you knew she thought it was fun from her reactions when confronted. A sick, sick person. The details of her actions, all done knowingly are not blog fodder but trust me when I say, well people do not do the things she did.And enjoy them. And justify them. How sad it must have been to be her!


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