Friday, February 21, 2014

What I have learned from Dickens

I've been on a Charles Dickens kick lately - reading and watching my BBC porn (sorry, is that redundant?)
Some things I have learned from Dickens...

1. If you are rich, you will be miserable.
2. If you try to become rich, you will most likely become miserable and die trying.
3. If you are poor, you will also be miserable, and might also die.
4. If you love someone, changes are that they love someone richer than you, who is also miserable.
5. If you become rich, in order to persuade someone to marry you, they still won't love you and you'll still be miserable.
6. Did I mention that his characters are miserable?

I'm interested in reading a biography of him now. In addition to his creative genius, he was apparently a man of large appetites, and carried on an affair with his wife's sister while they were all living in the same house, AND had a mistress that was much younger.

Clearly they had a lot more free time in those days. I have a hard time keeping up with one man, one job, and two cats.

And because I promised, here are some snow pictures from Minnesota. (Where, by the way, they know how to PLOW - amazing, no? I wish people in the Northwest would have, say, one or two plows on hand because it does snow here more than once every few years.)

On my parents' street...
My little bro was a super good sport and humored me on walks. My dad was so amused that we were going to walk to Starbucks that he took a picture of the occasion.
I am the one bundled up like a black marshmallow.

By the way, all of these pictures I have in a desktop folder labeled "cold as fuck." My dad's folder, which he created before he knew I created mine, is called "Arctic fuckery."


Elephant's Child said...

What a masterly summation of Dickens. Who makes me miserable on the (very rare) occasions I decide I 'ought' to read him. And fail.
And ooh, and aah on the cold as fuck pictures.

OldLady Of The Hills said...

I LOVE your list of "Understanding Dickens"....LOL! Well, that's what I'm calling it....It Is PERFECTION!
Lord, he was depressing!

You and your bro look very cute in all that snow.
I just can't even imagine it anymore....Tooooooooo Cold!!!! But I enjoyed seeing your pictures of the results of a Blizzard! More Pics Please!

DWei said...

I bet Dickens was miserable and just projected that onto everyone else.

Fairly certain that if I was rich, I wouldn't be miserable.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

"Great Expectations" is one of my all-time fave novels. And you're right -- EVERYONE was miserable in that one, for the reasons you say. I believe there's a new movie coming out soon about Dickens and his mistress called "Invisible Woman" or something like that. I think Ralph Fiennes plays Dickens.

Ileana said...

Omg, you and your dad and your file names cracked up. You look so cute all bundled up...and I know how much you two love your coffee. If you were WALKING to Starbucks I'm sure you appreciated a hot cup of whatever they have. I was in Minnesota a few weeks ago and spent more time walking from building to building from the Minneapolis Marriott in those gerbil trails (those walkways that connect the buildings so you don't have to step outside). I really appreciated my red wine on that trip. It was beyond cold! Dickens sounds like a DICKens. Let me know if you get your hands on a good biography.

Ileana said...

"cracked me up..."

Vanessa Morgan said...

That's so true (and funny) what you say about Dickens. And probably the reason why reality is sometimes better than fiction :-) I do love those depressive stories though.

Cheryl said...

Haha..I love your Dicken's synopsis. He really had the knack for writing about misery.

That's funny that you are in the mood for Dickens...I watched an updated version of Great Expectations the other night when I couldn't sleep. Most horrible movie ever with Ethan Hawke. I was thinking I need to reread the actual book to get the horrible taste out of my mouth left from watching that crappy movie.

What a cute picture of you and your brother. I don't blame you for bundling up..That is a WAAYYY too much snow. But pretty impressive job by the snow plow guys.

I didn't know those things about Dickens. I guess the trick is not having a day job. I am thinking maybe, by just being a writer allows for a bit of flexibility...Perhaps when Dickens got tired of writing he could take a break... and whoever was close at hand, his wife, his girlfriend or his sister-in-law helped "relax" him.

Birdie said...

Great file names. Your dad raised you well!

Riot Kitty said...

EC: I like him, but I find I have to pay attention, lest I miss him making fun of humanity, while dragging us through the muck of it.
Naomi: Thanks and thanks! I have a couple more I can post.
DW: Possibly. But he was also rich.
Debra: Yes! It's out in the US, but only at a few theaters...really want to see it (gnashes teeth.)
Ily: OMG, gerbil trails is the perfect name for them!! And yes, I got hot, not iced, coffee for once.
Vanessa: Somehow I like him too! The bad guys usually get it, maybe that's why.
Cheryl: I, too HATED that movie. Because once again, Gwyneth Paltrow plays a character that no one can love, but some poor nice bastard falls to pieces over her. Plus Pip (if that is his name) is such a shit. Haven't read that yet but my friend hated it for the same reason.
Birdie: Merci!

G. B. Miller said...

We can now truly see just how lacking in height you really are. :D

Claire said...

That Dickens course needs to be a university reality.

Introverted Art said...

Dickens knows best!

Abby said...

I haven't read much Dickens, and I guess I won't start now, although his bio might be interesting...

Cute pic of you and the bro. And, strangely, I think you look a lot like me (or vice versa) when I dress as a black marshmallow.

Rock Chef said...

Yes, Dickens is all about death and misery.

I live on the north coast of Kent - Dickens spent a lot of time here - Bleak House is about 25 miles from here, and my wife grew up in the area where Great Expectations is set. 2 towns have annual Dickens festivals, with parades and stuff. We are very proud of his celebration of English misery.

Granny Annie said...

I have renamed my computer file folder that holds all of my pictures from this winter. This F-ing Winter of Misery. Thank you.

Ms. CrankyPants said...

Yes - Abby Normal is right! I was totally thinking you two resemble each other.

My dad tried to force me to read A Tale of Two Cities for years (when I was in high school). Of course, I resisted, just because he so persistent. Years later, I read it and actually liked it. Guess I should tell him... :)

A Beer For The Shower said...

The affair bit made me laugh. Yes, I love my wife and have no desire to cheat on her to begin with, but the thought of having to put up with TWO women is absolutely exhausting. I don't know how guys do it. I can barely handle one.

Betty Manousos said...

wow, you look gorgeous, rk!

Dickens's quotes are so true!

great expectations, oliver twist(!), david copperfield are some of my all-time favourite novels.

wish you a great week ahead!
big hugs~

Betty Manousos said...

that last line cracked me up!

LL Cool Joe said...

Did you say "Little Bro?" Ha, that made me laugh. That must make you tiny!

I have to admit I've never read any Dickens. Just as well by the sounds of it, life is depressing enough as it is!

Lady Lilith said...

Basically if you are a Dickens fan, do not become rich.

Lee said...

Obviously nothing has changed since the days of Dickens...everyone is still miserable, rich, poor or in the middle! ;)

I'm sure you will come up with a suitable nom de plume for "Starbucks", RK! ;)

Riot Kitty said...

GB: 5'3". He is also standing closer to the camera :)
Claire: I believe so!
IA: He was pretty spot on, actually.
Abby: Black marshmallows, unite!
RC: I had no idea there really was a Bleak House, that is very cool. And I would love to go to a Dickens festival.
GA: You're welcome!
Cranky: I remember liking that one too - I read it forever ago.
ABFTS: Ditto here, but in reverse. You get my meaning.
Betty: You are so sweet! My dad said Oliver Twist was his favorite because it was among the happier and shorter ones ;)
Joey: Well, little as in younger - we're long past the days where my little brothers were actually shorter than me :)
LL: Good advice, that.
Lee: Well, having Starbucks is an improvement!

Dexter Klemperer said...

St. Pauli Girl has always wanted to go to Dickens on the Strand Festival in Galveston. So if we ever go and she asks why I look so miserable in my top hat, I'll have a solid answer.

Riot Kitty said...

Dexter: OMG! I am laughing my ass off now...thank you.

Lynn said...

You do look bundled up for that walk - which I'll bet was fun. :) I'm glad you had such a good visit.

And Dickens was a bit of a cad then. Hmpf. I am sorry to hear he was such a cheater - maybe that's why he was so full of misery. :)

Riot Kitty said...

Lynn: We took several and they were! It's widely thought that Dickens had bipolar disorder, actually, which would explain some of the erratic behavior and the mood swings.

CraveCute said...

I love your photo next to the huge snowdrifts!! You are both so cute! Black is a very good color to wear in white out conditions, if you fall and can't get up your odds are better that someone will see you lying in the snow and help or at least call 911...Yep that's my Minnesota