February 10th, 2005



I finished Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides on Friday but have not had a chance to write about it. I read the last 150 pages in one sitting. I tried to savor the end because I knew I would be sad when I finished but I could not stop reading. I loved this book and I cannot wait to discuss it with the book group.

The novel deftly reconciles opposites: male and female, America and Asia Minor, old and young, Detroit and Grosse Pointe, classical and contemporary. Eugenides is also deft in his treatment of a subject that might cause discomfort. He handles it gently with regular injections of wit and irreverence. And the author’s masterful portrait of Cal, the narrator and main character, dispels any distance from our heroine made hero and draws the reader in as a confidante and co-conspirator. Cal is the poet of the tale like Homer, the all-seeing narrator like Tiresias and the wanderer like Odysseus. In the course of reading about his family’s journey so closely knit with his own rite of passage, we see our families and ourselves woven into the duality, secrets and transformations unraveled in this beautifully written book.

Skittish Invasion

If I remember correctly, no one on a K-12 school campus has much privacy. Lockers get searched, the halls get monitored, attendance is taken and weird stuff is mostly prevented from happening in the bathrooms. That's a typical school atmosphere.

So now the invasion of privacy has been automated with electronic tracking devices on students at a Sutter, CA school. Maybe I'm just loopy today from more Bondo fumes but I don't have a real problem with this.