March 26, 2008

Book author stops by blog post to display lack of a sense of humor.

Here's my post. Here's the author's comment.

IN THE COMMENTS: Everyone seems to think I'm mean, and I pout about no one seeing what I was trying to say in the original post. Except maybe Joan.

ADDED: Okay, let me make my point explicitly so that this isn't a guessing game (much as I like guessing games).

I quoted Bella DePaulo saying:
What may be less obvious is that if reports [of the supposed health benefits of marriage] were more accurate and less caricatured, that would also be good for anyone who is, or wants to be, coupled. When singles are stigmatized, there is a risk that some people will be tempted to couple and marry for the wrong reasons — to escape the cultural muck that comes with being single. When singles are no longer marginalized or demeaned, then people who want to couple can do so from a position of strength. Rather than running away from singlehood to escape the stigma, they can move toward marriage or coupling as something they want to embrace.
Then, apparently too enigmatically, I said:
Ah, but what if they don't?

The pleasures of singlehood must be kept hush-hush. It's not a legitimate life style, you hear?
My point — which is a serious one (though made in what is a humorous style that perhaps only I appreciate) — is that society needs men and women to form solid families. It can get along if some people opt out, but things won't go well if too many people fail to take this path. Hence, there is a lot of pro-marriage propaganda out there. Maybe there's too much and that it may cause some individuals to marry too soon. If there were less propaganda, maybe marriage would be improved, because people would "embrace" it for its real value instead of latching onto it out of fear of being single. My point is that if the positive side of singlehood is promoted, maybe far too many people will avoid the difficult work of finding a partner and forming a stable family unit, to the detriment of society.

Can singlehood be portrayed as good but only good enough to reduce the number of bad marriages and not good enough to attract the kind of staunch adherents who advocate marriage as a way of life? Is DePaulo's book a nice, reassuring middle-of-the road sort of a thing, designed to take the edge off the predicament of not having a spouse? Or is she really promoting singlehood at the expense of marriage? If she is, you see the problem. That's the basis of my punchline: "The pleasures of singlehood must be kept hush-hush. It's not a legitimate life style, you hear?" I want to be single, and maybe so does DePaulo, but we might live to regret promoting this simple, free, self-indulgent life-style.

69 comments:

Donald Douglas said...

That's why I come over here ... you keep my sense of humor afloat!

Now about that Obama endorsement...

American Power

rhhardin said...

I don't get it.

Bob said...

Seems rather unfair to smack her as not showing a sense of humor. Catty, almost.

Middle Class Guy said...

hardin, you missed the most important line:


"My book..."

Get it now? Marketing and self promotion diguised as commentary.

She may lack a sense of humor, but she was polite.

Fen said...

Have to agree. I didn't get your humor either. And her comment was very graceful:

When singles are no longer marginalized or demeaned, then people who want to couple can do so from a position of strength. Rather than running away from singlehood to escape the stigma, they can move toward marriage or coupling as something they want to embrace.

Ann Althouse said...

Well, she came by to disagree with me and defend herself. I'm making fun of what I see as a failed effort at self-promotion. Would you read a book by someone who had that response to what I said? I wouldn't. She seems stunningly humorless.

Ann Althouse said...

"her comment was very graceful"

In my book, her comment was dopily earnest and no fun at all. Maybe that's why I'm single.

reader_iam said...

I dunno. Her comment struck me as just ... clarifying, as she said. I thought it was neutral, polite and nice, and not at all challenging. Just clarifying.

"Sense of humor" seems to me beside the point, and I don't see any evidence in her comment that she lacks one. Actually, I don't see any evidence sufficient to determine that either way.

But, whatever. No doubt this comment of mine is too earnest, too, on account of I didn't just ignore your post but instead decided to comment on it.

reader_iam said...

MCG: Well, Althouse brought up her book (see "Blog Author"). It hardly seems out of place for her to say "My book ... ".

rhhardin said...

Well, Althouse is subject to sudden storms. That's why they name hurricanes after women. They are basically weather systems.

Trooper York said...

Men don't make passes at girls who wear glasses.

reader_iam said...

rhhardin:

Hurricanes have been given alternately male and female names, in at least the Easter Northern Pacific and Atlantic & Gulf of Mexico regions, since the end of the '70s.

Um, Andrew, for example?

reader_iam said...

Not to mention Hugo.

Trooper York said...

Candy is dandy but liquor is quicker.

bill said...

Add my 2 cents to reader_iam's comments.

Althouse asked a question, author stopped by with a bit of an answer, no hint of humor or lack of humor displayed by anyone. I recommend a couple "please and thank yous" for all.

rhhardin said...

Hurricanes have been given alternately male and female names, in at least the Easter Northern Pacific and Atlantic & Gulf of Mexico regions, since the end of the '70s.

When the weather bureau went PC.

But the feminist-free inclination is and was to name hurricanes after women, for a good reason.

The weather bureau wasn't running out of names.

Ann Althouse said...

I'm beginning to think that no one understood the meaning of my original post. I don't care if you think this post is too mean, but it bothers me that no one seems to have understood what I was saying.

terrance said...

Ann wrote: In my book, her comment was dopily earnest and no fun at all. Maybe that's why I'm single.

Now that she is a grown woman, the omnisciently clever Ann is just too gosh darn tanscendent, non-dopily carefree, and fun to have a partner.

Trooper York said...

It's no fun when people don't get your jokes!

Did you hear the one about Elliot Spitzer and the organ grinder?

Bob said...

Ann Althouse: I'm beginning to think that no one understood the meaning of my original post. I don't care if you think this post is too mean, but it bothers me that no one seems to have understood what I was saying.

I found the original post impenetrable and basically over my head, but de gustibus non est disputandum as I always say. The reply to the author, however, was just plain catty; she did nothing to offend or warrant the cattiness.

Just my opinion. I don't claim it's worth much.

rhhardin said...

to have understood what I was saying

Sure, you're in favor of chastity.

Trooper York said...

I have a Grumble Cat in mind
Her name is Jennyanydots
Her coat is of the tabby kind with tiger stripes and leopard spots
All day she sits upon the stair or on the step or on the mat
She sits and sits and sits and sits
And that's what makes a Grumble Cat
That's what makes a Grumble Cat!

But . . .
When the day's hustle and bustle is done
Then the Grumble Cat's work is but hardly begun
And when all the family's in bed and asleep
She tucks up her skirts to the basement to creep
She is deeply concerned with the ways of the mice
Their behaviour's not good and their manners not nice
So when she has got them lined up in the serving
She teaches them music, blogging and commenting
(Cats, The Musical)

paul a'barge said...

Lurve you Althouse, but in this case I think you're the one displaying a shocking level of humorlessness.

Call it a long day and get to bed early.

George said...

I thought her response was graceful and easier to understand than her book excerpt.

Please—more posts on Barack "imperfect vessel" Obama and Hillary "I am human" Clinton.

Paddy O. said...

"a failed effort at self-promotion"

Quite the opposite it seems. She came by, made an earnest response to a post now far gone from regular comments. Her addition would have been unseen, and unread by the great majority. Except you highlighted it, created a sense of sympathy for her in the process, thus giving her book more promotion.

You've mentioned her and her book twice on your blog. That's successful promotion whether or not anyone understood your original post. Indeed, it seems people understand her comment more than the humor. I saw the humor but now I get the sense I should be seeing something a lot more than what I saw, and I'm confused.

Clearly singleness has addled my brain. I need to find a wife to help me out of my crisis!

Shawn Levasseur said...

So the joke went over her head, big deal. No need to rub it in her face.

Trooper York said...

"Clearly singleness has addled my brain. I need to find a wife to help me out of my crisis!"

You definately need a wife to tell you what's funny dude. Chick comedies funny. Jackass and making fun of retarded people not so much. Plus you can learn about thread count, pillows, drapes, and curtains, chargers around plates and china patterns as well as matching shoes with an outfit. It's all a trade off.

Joan said...

Ann's original post was mocking the excerpt for ignoring the fact that some people like being single and have, in fact, no desire to marry or "couple", and therefore the whole effort to legitimize people's choices to marry or be part of a couple is silly.

I don't think "couple", when used as a verb and referring to people, means what the author thinks it means. At least not usually. She seemed to equate having sex with marrying, which doesn't make sense to me.

Paddy O. said...

I would have to give up Jackass for curtains and china patterns?

My plates are perfectly fine without any of these so-called chargers.

I don't know Trooper, I'm thinking I might be happier, if less funny and more addled, by staying single.

I'll admit that the thought of thread counts does make me giggle a little, but I suspect I'd be chastised for not laughing at the right thing.

And Hugh Grant does have a certain laughable charm to him... I could get used to his wry interactions...

Roost on the Moon said...

"I don't care if you think this post is too mean, but it bothers me that no one seems to have understood what I was saying."

I don't know, Althouse, you're coming off a little humorless, here.

former law student said...

Internet Convention #42: On the internet, every comment that's not obviously agreement or praise must be a criticism which demands a response.

bill said...

Ann's original post was mocking the excerpt for ignoring the fact that some people like being single and have, in fact, no desire to marry or "couple..."

Except that's not really the case. I read the excerpted paragraph as arguing for a world where being single or being married is an equally respected position and people only get married because that's what they truly want to do to, not because of societal pressure. Be happy being single or be happy being married. I guess I keep missing the humor because the snarky comment made no sense to me in relation to the quoted text.

But I'm all for audience of one humor. So if it made Ann laugh while leaving me scratching my head, I have no problem with that.

Trooper York said...

Don’t get me wrong Paddy O, getting married is the best thing I ever did. It’s great to have some one who always has your back and is in the foxhole with you. Summer brunch in the back yard in the sun reading the paper and drinking coffee. Walks along the promenade holding hands as you go to the Ice Cream factory for a cone. Quiet dinners in your favorite restaurants where you see other people fighting, and you can look at each other and smile. Snuggling up on a cold winter’s night. It’s the best thing you can do in life.

It’s just that it’s tough when you want to watch the 300 or the Fantastic Four on pay per view and you end up watching the Traveling Sisterhood of the Fried Green Tomatoes that you kinda have to have a little patience. But don’t worry; eventually you can get the remote back.

By the way, I loved your brother’s TV show.

Middle Class Guy said...

Trooper York said...
It's no fun when people don't get your jokes!

Did you hear the one about Elliot Spitzer and the organ grinder?


He banged Hurdy Gurdy?


The cad!!!!!!

Smilin' Jack said...

The pleasures of singlehood must be kept hush-hush. It's not a legitimate life style, you hear?

If someone doesn't find that statement especially funny, that doesn't necessarily indicate that they don't have a sense of humor. In fact, it might be an indication that they do.

I don't care if you think this post is too mean, but it bothers me that no one seems to have understood what I was saying.

I think what bothers you is that no one thought what you said was particularly funny. Which means, of course, that it wasn't.

Middle Class Guy said...

It’s just that it’s tough when you want to watch the 300 or the Fantastic Four on pay per view and you end up watching the Traveling Sisterhood of the Fried Green Tomatoes that you kinda have to have a little patience. But don’t worry; eventually you can get the remote back.


Two TVs.

terrance said...

Ann Althouse said...
I'm beginning to think that no one understood the meaning of my original post. I don't care if you think this post is too mean, but it bothers me that no one seems to have understood what I was saying.

Defensiveness is a necessary (and sufficient) characteristic of the pundit.

terrance said...

Jack wrote: I think what bothers you is that no one thought what you said was particularly funny. Which means, of course, that it wasn't.


Ann is to humor what a black hole is to light.

Zeb Quinn said...

'm beginning to think that no one understood the meaning of my original post.

You shoulda known that goin' in, what with you being way up there and all, and the little people being way down here.

She lost me with departing point assumption, the conflation of the concepts of marriage and "coupling."

Trooper York said...

If the conjoining of two people in marriage is called a coupling, what was it that Governor McGreevy had with Dina and his driver?

A tripling.

reader_iam said...

Oh, pooh. People didn't say you were being mean; that was your word. And it's perfectly possible to both understand your original post AND to make some of the comments here. And to find it humorous when you do posts of this type, and even to engage in chain-yanking of one's own.

LOL.

Chip Ahoy said...

I've never completely understood the phrase "my better half" mostly because I could never separate it from the phrase "my ball and chain."

My older brother is truly wedded. He and his wife are like conjoined cows. It's disgusting. Wait. Maybe it's blessed. I drop an ice cube on an impeccably clean floor, quickly pick it up and drop it into my glass and whisper to him, he was standing right there, "Three second rule." He goes, "Ha! Hey, Brenda! Guess what this guy just said!" I don't get that. No event, however tiny, is complete without the other. If I ever become that codependent, please, somebody just shoot me, or shoot my half, that is.

This book, Singled Out: How singles are stereotyped, stigmatized, and ignored, and still live happily ever after, has 30 reviews on Amazon, which is quite good. Congratulations, Bella DePaulo. Yesterday I looked for a book on balcony gardening and most those books have no reviews at all.

The Senator said...

In spite of her assertion that singlehood is a good thing and that she's happily single, the mere title of her book--Singled Out: How singles are stereotyped, stigmatized, and ignored, and still live happily ever after--suggests otherwise and plays the martyr card. "Oh, it's sooo hard to be single! You just don't understand how hard it is to eke out a happy existence when you're constantly being treated like I am. So let me tell you about how happy I am even though I'm treated so horribly."

Also, if singles are being "ignored," how can they also be "stereotyped" and "stigmatized?" Or maybe those things happen in that order? After those evil coupled peoples are done stereotyping and stigmatizing you, THEN they ignore you?

I don't see Althouse as particularly mean or catty here. There seems to be something of a disconnect to me in writing a book about how great it is to be single and devote a section to how desirable it is to be coupled. If it's not wrong to be single--and those reading this book probably feel this way and are looking for agreement--then why tell them that they can do things to make them want to stop being single? At best, Althouse was snarky, but is anyone really surprised? Is that such a departure from other posts?

Also, I just can't make any sense out of this sentence: "I noted in my blog that reducing singlism is also good for people who want to be coupled, but that was just to include them..."

Ann Althouse said...

Note that I've added an update to the post.

reader_iam said...

simple, free, self-indulgent life-style

Interesting.

I was single until my mid '30s (and lived by myself in an apartment of my own for seven years, which I loved, by the way). I've been a mother since age 39.

Speaking strictly for myself, the only years I would come close to describing as involving a "simple, free and self-indulgent lifestyle" were the married years prior to having a kid. I don't think that's particularly unusual. Is it?

Trooper York said...

I think that people who get married later in life have a better appreciation and understanding of the compromises and trade off's that are part of a good marriage. When you get married young you don't have enough experience of life or a frame of reference where you can weigh the day to day issues that blow up like hurricane Katrina. I got married at 45 and it has been pretty great for me. But that's just me. What the hell do I know? A single chicken pot pie and a cup of tea must have their charms. To each his or her own.

Bob said...

As soon as you begin explaining a joke it loses all its humor, presuming it had any to begin with.

Time to let this little toy boat sink.

paul a'barge said...

Think single is cool? Read this.

Think again.

nansealinks said...

you boomers all need to get married and pregnant by age 22. Then get divorced when the kids are out of the house. Get a grandkid by age 45.

And then get free from your dang money, and yourselfs.

free, simple self indulgent.

Rolling down a hill for two hours with a grandchild, carefree, attached but detached by a generation. All the time in the world. Then two hours later have some black guy whistle at your white ass (can I mention race?) and curse his boldness but know this is kinda typical of black guys, but wink at the white guy who is thinking the same thing, but being a gentlemen about it knowing that is more typical for older white guys.

Then go home alone. Cry in your bed that you are alone, Wake up the next morning and glad you are alone.

Reuse and recyle. Mostly reduce the talk and walk the walk.

terrance said...

Trooper York said...
I think that people who get married later in life have a better appreciation and understanding of the compromises and trade off's that are part of a good marriage.

I needed to be housebroken before I was read for marriage.

rhhardin said...

Barbara Feldon (``99''), whose presence was responsible for the entire popularity of Get Smart because of the way she treated her man, wrote Living Alone and Loving It : A Guide to Relishing the Solo Life, more or less reflecting her inability to pull it off in real life.

It's written for women, and between the lines everywhere is a man. No man kicking in the stall, as Imus put it once.

I dated an actress once in college and was certainly not up to the role either.

In the series, American males were in love with 99 not because she was pretty but because she didn't nag, but always showed Max she was satisfied with him whether or not he screwed up. This in return for his displaying being willing to die for her.

A simple, stable dynamic hard to work in real life if you're an actress. An actual knight in shining armor was needed.

terrance said...

Ann clarified her joke thusly:

"I quoted Bella DePaulo saying:
What may be less obvious is that if reports [of the supposed health benefits of marriage] were more accurate and less caricatured, that would also be good for anyone who is, or wants to be, coupled. When singles are stigmatized, there is a risk that some people will be tempted to couple and marry for the wrong reasons — to escape the cultural muck that comes with being single. When singles are no longer marginalized or demeaned, then people who want to couple can do so from a position of strength. Rather than running away from singlehood to escape the stigma, they can move toward marriage or coupling as something they want to embrace.Then, apparently too enigmatically, I said:
Ah, but what if they don't?
The pleasures of singlehood must be kept hush-hush. It's not a legitimate life style, you hear?My point — which is a serious one (though made in what is a humorous style that perhaps only I appreciate) — is that society needs men and women to form solid families. It can get along if some people opt out, but things won't go well if too many people fail to take this path. Hence, there is a lot of pro-marriage propaganda out there. Maybe there's too much and that it may cause some individuals to marry too soon. If there were less propaganda, maybe marriage would be improved, because people would "embrace" it for its real value instead of latching onto it out of fear of being single. My point is that if the positive side of singlehood is promoted, maybe far too many people will avoid the difficult work of finding a partner and forming a stable family unit, to the detriment of society.

Can singlehood be portrayed as good but only good enough to reduce the number of bad marriages and not good enough to attract the kind of staunch adherents who advocate marriage as a way of life? Is DePaulo's book a nice, reassuring middle-of-the road sort of a thing, designed to take the edge off the predicament of not having a spouse? Or is she really promoting singlehood at the expense of marriage? If she is, you see the problem. That's the basis of my punchline: "The pleasures of singlehood must be kept hush-hush. It's not a legitimate life style, you hear?" I want to be single, and maybe so does DePaulo, but we might live to regret promoting this simple, free, self-indulgent life-style."

Ann, you crack me up. For all of you aspiring blog humorists, it represents a lesson in comedic timing. Keep them coming Ann.

blake said...

FWIW, I thought it was funny, and fairly provocative as well.

The thing I see about homosexual couplings and particularly childless couplings, and singleness is, at the societal level, why should anyone care?

Society doesn't really care if you're "happy" or "fulfilled" or "self-actualized". None of that promotes the survival of the group.

Society wants rock-solid foundations for the younger generations, and damn your individual needs.

Ann Althouse said...

I'm not explaining a "joke" so you'll have a big laugh. I'm explaining what I meant -- which is serious -- and which, put it in an elliptical way (that amused me), people didn't understand. At this point I don't care whether you are amused. I actually want you to understand my point. I think a lot of the resistance and distraction (such as saying I wasn't funny) is based on the fact that you don't agree with me and that you don't want others to agree with me. Well, really, you agree with the original "joke," which is that the benefits or singlehood must be kept hush-hush because we need people to marry and form stable families.

And by the way, I do think it is the best route for happiness for most people, especially men, as the comments here indicate.

Pogo said...

Europeans are quickly deciding that coupling for the sake of reproduction is not as much fun as singling, plus the occasional hook-up.

Let someone else have the kids.


Dobbs: Look Yossarian, suppose, I mean just suppose everyone thought the same way you do.
Yossarian: Then I'd be a damn fool to think any different.

Trooper York said...

Pete: [to Ben Stone] Marriage is like that show ‘Everybody Loves Raymond’, but it’s not funny. All the problems are the same, but
[pause]
Pete: you know instead of all the funny, pithy dialogue, everybody is really pissed off and tense.
(Knocked Up, 2007)

Trooper York said...

Vinnie: I thought a great place to meet girls would be night school, you know, where they teach English as a second language. You know, because these girls would be from foreign lands and, you know, maybe still a little disoriented from the journey and I would look attractive because... I speak English very goodly. But in the end it did not work out as I had hoped, I mean, basically I was told to take a hike in fourteen languages
(Must Like Dogs, 2005)

Roger said...

I liked it better when we talked about boobs.

blake said...

"the best route for happiness for most people"?

This speaks ill of your experience with marriage and children. (Not necessarily yours, but what you've seen and heard elsewhere.)

terrance said...

Ann Althouse said...
I'm not explaining a "joke" so you'll have a big laugh. I'm explaining what I meant -- which is serious -- and which, put it in an elliptical way (that amused me), people didn't understand.


Lighten up. It was an attempt at humor.

Pogo said...

From thisislondon via Instapundit.

Marriage hits lowest rate since records began almost 150 years ago
The number of Britons tying the knot has collapsed to a record low, it has emerged.
The proportion of men and women getting married is below any level found since figures were first kept nearly 150 years ago.
And the number of weddings held in 2006 was the smallest since 1895, when the population was little more than half its present level.

The general decline of marriage has been under way since 1972...

Benefits such as tax credits now favour individuals living with children rather than couples and the bias against couples is thought to have contributed to the growing numbers "living apart together".

Labour family policy has for a decade maintained that all kinds of families are equally valuable and ministers have campaigned for all references to marriage to be removed from state documents.
The Tories promised they would provide incentives for couples to get and stay together.

David Davis said: "This is a sad indictment of the Government's policies which have penalised families and fuelled family breakdown.

Researcher and author Mrs Morgan said: "I have been reading the Children's Plan put out by Children's Secretary Ed Balls last year. "It does not mention marriage once.

"This Government has removed the idea of marriage from research and public documents and from the tax and benefit system.
"It has taken the last remaining benefits, like inheritance tax relief when a spouse dies, and given them to other groups like homosexuals in civil partnerships."

terrance said...

It's funny. I occasionally dip in on Althouse's blog satisfying the same dysfunctional motivation as when I find myself staring at one of those bizarre VHI reality shows when channel surfing.

Personally, each day is usually a struggle for me to keep my head emotionally above water. For some strange reason, I feel a bit better about myself after reading Ann Althouse. I thank you for sharing your unique presence with us.

As a matter of fact, I wonder if one of the cable networks would go for a reality TV show that brings together some of our fave bloggers. It would be awesome, baby.

Trooper York said...

terrance, come by more often. A lot of the people who post here are pretty cool, they just get caught up in the passions of the moment. You add something to the party. Think of yourself as the cheese dip and you will feel alot better. All the best.

Bella said...

Hi Ann,

Thanks for your blog post titled, "Book author stops by blog post to display lack of a sense of humor." Now THAT was hilarious! I do love the people who comment on your blog -- and that's no joke.

As for your question, "Is DePaulo's book a nice, reassuring middle-of-the road sort of a thing, designed to take the edge off the predicament of not having a spouse?" I'd love to see your answer after you've read Singled Out. I so hope you don't describe it as "nice" or "reassuring" or "middle-of-the-road"! I can't say I agree with your disease model of singlehood, as a "predicament" that you need to "take the edge off" with a stiff drink or a bland book.

In any case, it has been fun to read your blog (and esp the comments), even if you did call me humorless.

--Bella DePaulo

Ann Althouse said...

I espoused a "disease model"? All I said was that society has an interest in promoting behavior that serves the common good. If singlehood really is great and people find out about it and get over the inducements to marry and form solid families, there will be a big problem. Do you deny that? But I don't think you're perceiving that as the "disease" you think I espouse. You seem to take as my view what I guessed might be your view ("the predicament of not having a spouse") in my question about your book. My view of singlehood lies in my repeated questioning -- which you've never answered -- about the problems that would arise if people understood the great pleasure of being single. I wrote "I want to be single" and praised "this simple, free, self-indulgent life-style." Does that sound as though I think it's a disease from the point of view of the individual? Obviously not.

Bella said...

Hi Ann,

1. Rather than guessing what might be my view (incorrectly), why not read the book?

2. The answer to your question is in the last chapter.

3. Describing singlehood as a predicament (and one for which practitioners need to take the edge off) is a disease model, and describing singles as self-indulgent is still more singlism. I discuss why self-centered is an inaccurate characterization of singles in several places throughout the book.

I think this post has gotten dated, so if you want your readers to see your latest put-downs, why don’t you start a new post. Maybe think of another insulting description of me (you’ve already used “stunningly humorless,” “failed effort at self-promotion,” and “dopily earnest and no fun at all”) to include in the title.

My suggestion (not that you want it) is that you try reading at least the first page of Singled Out. If you really can’t bear to read any more after that, but you still want me to address the issues you raised, just let me know. Your questions cannot be answered very briefly (or at least not by someone as dopey as me), but I’d be happy to write out answers if you want them on your blog.

I do want to get my message out. I think it is time that we set aside the tired old ways of thinking about singles (such as the ones you’ve articulated) and at least consider some new ones. You’ve indicated that you have evaluated my attempts to get my viewpoint out there, and assigned them a failing grade. I’m open to your suggestions for improvement.

Earnestly, dopily, and stunningly humorlessly yours,

Bella

Ann Althouse said...

Thanks, I'll check out the book. I was only blogging an article about the book and asking what I think are fair questions. I haven't given you "a failing grade." For someone who is fussy about the interpretations I make from the info available to me, you are rather free with your interpretations of what I'm saying. Calling a lifestyle self-indulgent isn't saying it's a disease.

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