There is a group of women who meet every month. Our meetings began so we could share our love of reading, but after a few hours together it was clear that we shared more than that. However this group was formed, or whose idea it was is a bit unclear. We are from many different backgrounds and we have many different occupations. These different life experiences are what I think provides the best entertainment now that we are in our tenth year together.
Ours is more of a book sharing club, where we all bring whatever books we have enjoyed so that we can share them with the others in the group. We pile all the books in whatever designated spot in the host’s home, then converge on each other with our stories from the past month. The best of these stories don’t come from books, but they are chapters from our real life stories which are just as entertaining, or sometimes heart wrenching.
Bookclub has transformed a bit. I now suspect that there are books being thrown on the table that no one has read. I suspect this because I have done it. Sometimes there are things thrown into a conversation that go like this “I never read”. Funny thing to hear at a bookclub, but we don’t care. Our best reason for getting together is to have a few cocktails and to share our own experiences, and most times to have a ‘cleansing belly laugh’ as Kelly put it. I was immediately concerned because for me the word cleansing has some bowel movement connotations that made me wonder just what she had put in the crab dip. I will pass on the cleansing belly laugh dip thankyou very much. Some of us in bookclub have a hard enough time trying not to pee when we laugh.
We discuss very serious things. Things like proper etiquette when visiting someone’s home. What to do when your host’s dog is frantically ‘having his way’ with an object in the living room and you can’t be sure if she is unaware or just indifferent. Do you point it out to her? Do you look the other way to give him privacy? And just why would a neutered dog still have these hormonal surges? It’s disturbing when I reflect on how many of these conversations we have had. There have been many dogs, two rabbits and a very unfortunate cat with no claws whose frustrations have been discussed at bookclub.
We discuss options for business names, and proper professional email addresses. It was determined that ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ and ‘email@example.com’ were somewhat inappropriate but that turtleneckgirl and secondplacelin were probably fine.
We discuss some of our work experiences. Things like whether the guy who was interviewed had made one too many trips to Tim Hortons that morning, or if he was overdue for his non-prescription meds. Sometimes the farmers in the group discuss their work issues, which will either be met with awed interest or can create serious misunderstandings that need to be clarified….like when it was suggested that we could make gloves with our goats.
Say it quickly and you will understand.
As we get older, and some of us develop hearing issues, there can be some misunderstandings. A few of us were excited to hear that one of our members was considering running for Mayor…….until it was made clear that she was only volunteering to host bookclub in May OR June. As a result, I will propose that we should refer to her as ‘Jeff’ from now on. (Our mayor’s name is Jeff).
Overall, bookclub is about much more than books. It’s about a group of women who get together because they enjoy each other’s company. We can discuss things and know that what’s said at bookclub stays at bookclub….unless Terra or Kelly blog about it. For the most part, we don’t spend time talking about other people’s business, or try to make ourselves feel superior by pointing out the shortcomings of others. We like to focus on ourselves.
If you have one or two friends and you can reach out to a few more, you too can form a club that may just be lucky enough to grow into something more. It doesn’t matter what you say your reason for meeting is, you can call it rubber boot club if you like. The main thing is that you can tell your family that you have a meeting, which raises fewer eyebrows than if you say ‘I’m going out for a drink and a cleanse’.
“Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts. And we are never, ever the same.” – Anonymous