I belong to a book club. Yes, very girly, isn’t it? I’m sure some men gather to discuss shared interpretations of literature, perhaps while guzzling beer and flipping steaks. Some book clubs may even be co-ed – I’ve seen it in a movie – but certainly the cultural perception of “book club” as an excuse for ladies’ night out holds true to an extent.

In my case, copious amounts of wine and stunningly divine meals contribute significantly to book club’s appeal. However, we also discuss the books. The better the book, the more we discuss it. Yes, we’ve had a few clunkers, but overall, our reading list has provided hours of talking about subjects beyond our immediate lives, matters both intimate and worldly that have little to do with our love lives, our children, our jobs, local politics or the latest disaster in the news. A nice change of pace, in other words.

The elusive bluebird

Currently we’re reading my pick: Bluebird, Women and the New Psychology of Happiness by Ariel Gore. (Good interview with Ariel in Salon here.) I chose Bluebird partly because I know Ariel, like her writing and knew I’d want to read it anyway, so wouldn’t it be perfect to share with the women. Also, because happiness intrigues me and in her search for the heart of happiness, Ariel explores many of the same aspects of the positive thinking industry that rub the wrong way in order to get to the real meaning of what happiness is and how to obtain it. If we can obtain it.

Wow, long and rather convoluted sentence. I am writing quickly with less thought than I’d like, because what I should be doing is whipping up some breakfast for my summer school-impaired children.

Happiness – or at least writing about it – will have to wait. Again.