Carnivore Dreams – How To Make an American Quilt

Guilt Wall

Have you seen it?  Fabulous movie.  Some “staff writer” at Washington Post gave it a good review though said at times it was “heavy -handed.”   (The only thing worse than these critics is an anonymous one). And that the book was worse, according to said staffer:  “stilted and self-conscious.”  Apparently the script writer “saved” it from being a piece of crap.  Give me a break.  This staff writer should be so stilted.  I love how these critics think they know a damn thing about writing.  And I hope that “stilted” writer is taking every penny of that bad writing to the bank.

At any rate, if you haven’t seen it (and you should) Ann Bancroft’s character realizes that when her sister’s (Ellen Burstyn, I think) husband dies,  she sleeps with Ann’s husband, one time, out of grief, and so Ann understandably comes unglued (a funny word as you’ll soon see why).  Ann’s character figures this has happened by smelling her sister’s perfume on her husband.  She then breaks all her sister’s knick-knacks and glues them to her wall, I think in a back entry-way, in a reminder to both her husband and sister that she will never forget or forgive them.  Thirty years later, she finally tears the wall down.

My family and friends (and the town library and town folk) all let me down by not organizing and showing up for my reading in a town I should have been surrounded by family and friends, in a town we have had friends and roots since 1850 (well,  you know what I mean, we aren’t quite that old).  The book is SET in this town for heaven’s sake!

Our local distillery had three boards of beautiful cheese boards put together for four people (the last one had 30 people attending)–a humiliating affair that has me doubtful if I’ll ever return to a place I really liked a lot.

Nobody slept with my  husband as far as I know (let’s not open that can of worms) but perhaps the number of folks who let me down equals the severity of the offense.

I was thinking of smashing shot glasses and gluing them to my wall at my camp, but that wouldn’t be very original.  And probably a lot of work since I doubt I can retain feeling bitter for 30 years–wouldn’t be worth the trouble if I just remain pissed off for, say, ten years.  Right?

Actually, I don’t know how long I’ll stay pissed off.  I’m not sure.  Staying pissed off only hurts me (like those people always say about needing to forgive people who murder their loved ones).  I never really believe them, though.  Most of them. But I imagine they are indeed right and I’m grateful my loved ones are all alive to not attend my reading, to be selfish, disinterested, and thoughtless.  So I will concentrate on being grateful for that.  🙂

Last week there was a decapitated bird left on our deck here and I took it as a bad omen–(some annoying cat no doubt); but perhaps if this is the only bad thing to happen to me, I can count my lucky stars.

And I will.

Oh, I was thinking of buying my daughter a really cool cheese board,with a drawer in it that had a knife and a neat little spatula deal, and this really neat book of how to put together beautiful boards for company–after all, her husband is from Wisconsin and they are all now cheese-heads.  Had it saved on Amazon.  On top of everything else, I have to find a new idea for her birthday since giving her that under the circumstances will feel like my gluing those knickknacks to the wall.

Still, I liked it.  Imagine I can’t even buy it for myself now.

But for now, I’m going to feel bad. And be pissed off.  I’m not sure how long.

I hope not 30 years.

2 thoughts on “Carnivore Dreams – How To Make an American Quilt

  1. I’m so sorry about your reading! Those who we love most, hurt us most. Often we fail to see what means most to the people in our lives….and what they need. Someone once told me “Don’t expect people to know your needs if you don’t tell them what they are.” That has stuck with me. I’m still not good at it, but when people disappoint me (and I’m an idealist….they do and will!) I try to first ask myself “Did I tell them what I needed from them?” So often the answer is no. And yes, I know our first inclination is that we shouldn’t have to tell them, but we do. Other hearts and minds don’t work in quite the way ours do. We’re all pretty much thinking of our own needs. I suspect your family was.

    So next time (and let there be a next time) not only invite people, but let them know it is important to you that they be there. Self promote the heck out of it. Then if no one shows, find a new circle! Oh…and those three people who came? They are still significant. I recently heard a talented writer speak about her first book tour and three was about the average number of participants at each engagement. Many had no one show up. She said the worst was when one did, But she kept at it. Her reading I went to, on a week night? There were hundreds there!

    You have a fantastic creative mind. That’s a beautiful thing. Celebrate you, whether no one else does or not!

  2. Thanks for the comment! I invited them all to my launch. Normally I don’t even expect them there. But this is the town we’ve been in since 1850. I knew if I invited them, they’d come, be guilted into it. Read my follow up posts! 🙂 ( I get into all you are saying here!) I love hearing from people. And love your words of encouragement. (I happened to be sitting right here when it came in–a nice thing!) Thanks for taking the time to write.

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