Wednesday, May 6, 2009

A summons to Memphis

When Kyle was visiting Rhodes College for his on-campus interview, he was given a goodie-bag containing college brochures, Memphis periodicals, a Rhodes coffee-mug and a couple of "local interest" books. Last night I started reading one of them.

It is Peter Taylor's Pulitzer prize winning A Summons to Memphis, which I am finding insanely enjoyable. It's such a great Southern novel... with all its idiosyncrasies, and old-money, and plain people, and being only allowed to "deb" in one city and that's it, and people saying the most offensive things and still sounding like they are paying you a great compliment:

"Nashville," the old woman had said, "is a city of schools and churches, wheras Memphis is-- well, Memphis is something else again. Memphis is a place of steamboats and cotton gins, of card playing and hotel society. Anyway," the woman went on to say to Mother, "you, my dear Minta, will love Memphis."

I find it VERY funny that the search committee, or whoever was in charge of putting together the goodie-bag, thought about which books to include and picked Taylor's story. It is a novel about an Old South family moving to Memphis and subsequently falling apart. Not exactly the type of story you want to share with someone you are trying to CONVINCE to move there, is it?!


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  2. I am so jealous (secretly). The south is fascinating. We should so visit each other :)

  3. I LOVE the South!!! I went to school in Tennessee, you know. Kyle's only been to Memphis a couple of times and that's it. He's in for a FUN ride!!!

    We move in August. You have an open invitation to come visit any time. Just get your visa situation all straightened out before you come. I don't want my Green Card revoked for harboring illegal immigrants, ok. ;)))

  4. My favortie line from It Came From Memphis (the other Memphis book that Rhodes interviewees get in their goodie bags) is:

    "Memphis is the town where nothing ever happens, but the impossible always does."

    Word. True that.