Things I’ve Learned from Literary Fiction, part one

Things I’ve Learned from Literary Fiction, part one

1. It is possible to stuff a cat in a basket and drive with it for several hours.  Until suddenly, it isn’t.  “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” Flannery O’Connor

2. It is unwise to accept rides from strangers who have been smoking hashish.  “Car Crash While Hitchhiking,” Denis Johnson

3. Female enemies are easily destroyed.  “The Catbird Seat,” James Thurber

4. Life is a series of disappointments, ultimately culminating in misery and despair.  Revolutionary Road, Richard Yates

5. Love endures.  “A Rose for Emily,” William Faulkner

6. Resist the urge to chuckle if you are a bank robbery hostage.  “Bullet in the Brain,” Tobias Wolff

7. Hair grows back.  “The Gift of the Magi,” O. Henry

8. Heroin is bad.  “Sonny’s Blues,” James Baldwin

9. Your dog will abandon you in the hour of your greatest need.  “To Build a Fire,” Jack London

10. Discussing abortion, even in an exotic locale, can be fraught with tension.  “Hills Like White Elephants,” Ernest Hemingway

Feel free to add your own in the comments.

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2 thoughts on “Things I’ve Learned from Literary Fiction, part one

  1. Lesson I learned from our national parks:

    Grand Canyon: big ditch
    Zion: big red walls
    Yosemite: big grey walls
    Point Reyes: sandy beach
    Bryce Canon: big clay pillars
    Sequoia: big trees

    Lesson to be learned from this web post: It’s possible to make a reductio ad absurdum out of anything.

    But it isn’t the destination that counts, it’s the quality of the journey.

  2. Thanks, dude. Another lesson learned! To be fair, I’ve only been to Sequoia National Park. And yes, the trees are big there.

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