Friday, June 10, 2011

The dangers of literacy

I just read a short essay, "You Should Date An Illiterate Girl" by Charles Warnke. The whole thing is an explanation of why guys should avoid dating a girl who reads. (Bottom line? They're too smart for their own good. Or the good of the guy dating them. But now that I've ruined it for you, it's worth reading the essay to get to that destination anyway.)

The actual point of the article aside, oh, how spoke to me. Because, apparently, I am a girl who reads.

I know, you're shocked right? Stop the presses! Hell must be freezing over!

Oh, wait, I'm the girl who read over 130 books in 2010. I'm pretty sure I have ink in my veins in lieu of blood.

No, but seriously. This is like someone looked into my soul and described all of the dissatisfactions and frustrations and yearnings that I feel but couldn't articulate.

Below, I've hideously butchered the poor author's work, expunging (extirpating?) the whole "why girls who read suck to date" premise, in order to to get to the core description of a girl who reads:

"...a girl who reads possesses a vocabulary that can describe that amorphous discontent as a life unfulfilled—a vocabulary that parses the innate beauty of the world and makes it an accessible necessity instead of an alien wonder. A girl who reads lays claim to a vocabulary that distinguishes between the specious and soulless rhetoric of someone who cannot love her, and the inarticulate desperation of someone who loves her too much.
...a girl who reads understands syntax. Literature has taught her that moments of tenderness come in sporadic but knowable intervals. A girl who reads knows that life is not planar; she knows, and rightly demands, that the ebb comes along with the flow of disappointment. A girl who has read up on her syntax senses the irregular pauses—the hesitation of breath—endemic to a lie. A girl who reads perceives the difference between a parenthetical moment of anger and the entrenched habits of someone whose bitter cynicism will run on, run on well past any point of reason, or purpose, run on far after she has packed a suitcase and said a reluctant goodbye and she has decided that I am an ellipsis and not a period and run on and run on. Syntax that knows the rhythm and cadence of a life well lived.
...the girl who reads knows the importance of plot. She can trace out the demarcations of a prologue and the sharp ridges of a climax. She feels them in her skin. The girl who reads will be patient with an intermission and expedite a denouement. But of all things, the girl who reads knows most the ineluctable significance of an end. She is comfortable with them. She has bid farewell to a thousand heroes with only a twinge of sadness.
...girls who read are the storytellers. ...The girl who reads has spun out the account of her life and it is bursting with meaning. She insists that her narratives are rich, her supporting cast colorful, and her typeface bold. ...[She] will accept nothing less than passion, and perfection, and a life worthy of being storied."

That right there? That's me in a nutshell. So maybe I'm not crazy. Maybe I just read too much.

If you want to read the whole thing, you can find it here:

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