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Fish incredulous to actually yet again receive gift of bicycle

Recently, I once again shared airspace with the lively and fun Ed Champion of the Bat Segundo show, who, amidst much chatter about redheadedness, was one of the many men who have challenged, in RANK FINGER-POINTING outrage, my alleged needless gender focus, to the tune of half a show. (Over coffee I had brewed for him, I might add.) Ed’s objection to my book was along the lines that he a) once had long hair and b) was not a violent mill-worker, and had thus somehow become the object of discrimination. I will simply direct all further inquiries here.

Oh, whatever. I will do one more pick, from Levi’s otherwise nice write-up:

My biggest problem with Shelf Discovery involves its unnecessary gender focus; which Michael Orthofer also recently wrote about. Teenage boys read books too. Why leave half the world out?

It’s not yet at arguing with the dining room table level, but I just — I just do not follow the logic here. My book, last time I checked, was not a Valediction Against Boys Reading. If the argument is that boys DID read these books, I have said nothing to the contrary and, as my grandmother would say, Enjoy!. If the argument is that I have not written enough about books FOR boys or BY boys, though in fact I wrote about many, I direct the critic to his own typewriter, where I have not placed a ONLY FOR WRITING ABOUT GIRLS!!!!!!!!!! sign, the last time I checked. And if men are worried no one is paying attention to them, I direct them to NPR, which created a male-only companion piece of a kind to my TOTN interview by devoting the response segment to a man, talking about books he read as a boy, none of which appears or has anything to do with my book.

If the argument is simply that I wrote about a period of books mainly by female authors, often featuring female heroines, and read mostly by girls — hello. I did. Now go iron my shirt.

August 24th, 2009 at 9:00 am