Monday, March 9, 2009

Any Book Snobs Want a Date?

I have to admit, I am a bit disturbed by this article. A survey was done by a British pro-reading website, and men and women chimed in on what books would impress them into wanting a date. The fact that the survey was done through a reading website gives you the expected self-selected population, and gives much higher brow responses than the average male, I'm sure, but all together the responses give me the same complex I already have from reading on the bus: if it's not stunningly intellectual, it's not reading. Voltaire and Dickens impress men, apparently, but Bridget Jones and trashy romances send them running.

I don't expect everyone to appreciate the snarky humor of Helen Fielding, the beauty in her updating a classic work while pointing out the irony in our change (or lack thereof) in priorities. I don't expect everyone to appreciate and understand the beauty of pure escapist fiction, or even the joy of reading a horrible trashy romance novel just to feel superior (ugh I would never do that for a man, aren't I an independent woman! Also, I could totally write a better book than that). But, still, to say that someone reading Orwell is more dateable than someone reading Grisham? To say that a woman who enjoys the Confessions of a Shopaholic series is inherently materialistic? No thank you. If you are reading Zorba the Greek? You won't impress me. I will more likely skip you for the bloke reading Terry Pratchett or something silly. At least he knows how to have a good time.

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