Catcher in the Rye
As most of you probably know, JD Salinger passed away this week. While he wrote many stories and a few novellas, I’m pretty sure Catcher in the Rye was his only novel. It is certainly his most well-known and one of the most read, loved and controversial works in American literature. So here comes my confession…
I never liked it.
I thought Holden Caulfield was an over-indulgent, whiny kid who needed to get over himself. I understand that this is a wildly unpopular view and that most of my friends list this book as one of their favorites. Some even consider having read it an ephipheny-inducing event from which they’ve yet to recover. I thought it was a well-written story about entirely unlikable characters. I pretty much read it and my life moved on, in no way the better or worse for it.
Now, when Harper Lee dies, I will be back here weeping softly with an entirely different viewpoint. In my opinion, To Kill a Mockingbird is everything Catcher in the Rye claims to be, but isn’t.
State of the Union Address
I have another confession to make which will shock some people. As a self-proclaimed political junkie, I almost never watch the State of the Union Address.
Now, you would think that this is mandatory viewing for people interested in politics, especially for those of us with a piece of sheepskin hanging on our wall indicating a degree in Political Science. I’m not saying I don’t watch the news and find out what the major themes were, and I’m certainly not saying I’m not interested in the state of our union. I just can’t for the life of me stand the performance aspect of that particular event.
This may actually be one of the only political stances I take that is 100% bipartisan. I don’t care if it is a Republican or a Democrat – I think the constant applause by the President’s party or stern arm-folding and scowling by the opposite party is nothing but fodder for a Saturday Night Live skit. I’m all for a speech on the state of the union. How about we have one where people stay silent and listen to what the leader of our nation has to say? Then maybe I’ll watch.