Wednesday, January 06, 2010

the road


so, just before christmas i started reading "the road" by cormac mccarthy.
i know. what a cheery book to go into the holidays with, right?
that's exactly what sharon said..and i was already a bit down from time to time as the holidays drew nearer, so eager for the season and yet missing absent family and friends more than usual...

for those of you unfamiliar with the book, it's the story of a man trying to survive with his young boy in an absolutely lifeless post-apocalyptic world. the book gives little in the way of details, only to say that somehow all the lights went out and the earth is slowly dying under an ash-choked atmosphere of nuclear winter. no sunlight or moonlight can penetrate the miles of filth that envelops the planet. it is always cold, seemingly always raining or snowing, dirty precipitation from above. what few survivors there are have resorted to killing and cannibalism to gather food and stay alive.
and yet this is a story of love. a father's love. a son's love. i won't say any more.

i finished it saturday morning. i can't say that it's a book you can enjoy--it's even hard to say that i loved it...but i did. no wonder it won the pulitzer prize for literature--it's so wonderfully written, mccarthy showing us that words are magical things and even when describing sadness and despair, they can be beautiful.

we went to see the movie sunday afternoon at upstate films in rhinebeck. it too was well-done, well-acted, the story well-told. again, hard to say we enjoyed it, but i highly recommend it. well, read the book first. paint your own pictures first. the author is so very talented and evocative that you would be cheating yourself of a wonderful reading experience not to read it first. sharon and i talked about it and the questions it brings up all the way home...and are still talking about it today.

let me know what you think...


from the sad to the happy---
got this in an email the other day from my friend, lois--

Can you say "I love you" any better?

What Love means to a 4-8 year old. Slow down for three minutes to read this. It is so worth it.

Touching words from the mouth of babes.

A group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year-olds, 'What does love mean?'
The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined. See what you think:

'When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn't bend over and paint her toenails anymore.
So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That's love.'
Rebecca- age 8

'When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different.
You just know that your name is safe in their mouth.'
Billy - age 4

'Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other.'
Karl - age 5

'Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.'
Chrissy - age 6

'Love is what makes you smile when you're tired.'
Terri - age 4

'Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.'
Danny - age 7

'Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more.
My Mommy and Daddy are like that.. They look gross when they kiss'
Emily - age 8

'Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.'
Bobby - age 7 (Wow!)

'If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,'
Nikka - age 6
(we need a few million more Nikka's on this planet)

'Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.'
Noelle - age 7

'Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.'
Tommy - age 6

'During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn't scared anymore.'
Cindy - age 8

'My mommy loves me more than anybody
You don't see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.'
Clare - age 6

'Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.'
Elaine-age 5

'Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.'
Chris - age 7

'Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.'
Mary Ann - age 4

'I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.'
Lauren - age 4

'When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.' (what an image)
Karen - age 7

'Love is when Mommy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn't think it's gross.'
Mark - age 6

'You really shouldn't say 'I love you' unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.'
Jessica - age 8

see ya friday with more sketchbook action!
smell ya later!


Anonymous said...

Todd, you got me crying and laughing with this blog today.

'Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.'
Bobby - age 7 (Wow!)wow! wow! :)

Thanks for taking the time to write and share!

Christian D. Leaf said...

THE ROAD is a rough read, but well worth it. Curious about the movie, but will probably have to wait for the DVD.

'Love is when Mommy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn't think it's gross.'
Mark - age 6

Matt Wieringo said...

That one was my favorite too. Cause Daddy's a guy. And guy's don't sit down to pee. That IS love.

Haven't read THE ROAD yet but Suzanne has. It's on my loooonnng list of books to read.

Brian said...

Bobby's was my favorite as well.

Thanks for sharing those, Todd, they were great.

Alisa B said...

got an amazon gift certificate for Christmas, so I'm going to pick up the Road. Post apocalyptic stories always fascinate me!! Thanks for the suggestion.

Love and happy new year!!

Heywood Jablomie said...

Ha! Those were great. Thanks for sharing those.

I haven't heard anything about the book or the movie, but it's nice to know it's at least worth checking out!

Warren said...

My son has been trying to get me to read Cormac McCarthy for years now. He recommends I start with Blood Meridian. Dunno why I haven't read him yet. Maybe I'll start with the Road.

And everytime I read the profound sayings of small children, I'm reminded of the late, great Art Linkletter and his show. I wonder if "Kids Say the Darnedest Things" is still in print?