Carolyn Hax, 6 May 2013:
Dear Carolyn, My wife is an avid reader and enjoys a lot of different types of books. Among them are series usually geared toward teenagers, like “The Hunger Games” or “Twilight.” Before the premiere of the latest movie, she rereads the series and then goes to the midnight showing with a group of girlfriends. I am not talking about teenagers here, or even people in their 20s. We are in our 30s and both professionals. I think my wife’s interest in these books and movies is juvenile, and I don’t really understand it. I feel mildly embarrassed that she can talk (in detail!) to my nieces about these books at holiday gatherings. My wife thinks that her reading selection is her business only and that these books provide a nice relief from everyday problems. I can see her point, but on the other hand, I’m not sure why she can’t get the same thing from adult literature. Who is the odd one here, me or my wife? Anonymous
Your wife is an immature, unprofessional dolt who sadly gets along better with teenagers than with smart, classy, well-adjusted adults who rightly ascertain that literally nothing can define a person more than the fact that they occasionally read teen fiction.
There is no way any media directed at one interest group has one iota of an iota of an iota of a speck of anything remotely edifying, pleasant or distracting to offer to another interest group, which is why Harry Potter was such a flop, all kids hate Lord Of The Rings and a woman wrote The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.
The fact that your wife thinks she’s reading for her own pleasure rather than for yours is deeply disconcerting. The sooner this proletarian nitwit realizes that she has displeased Sir Husband, Arbiter of Taste In This Household Young Lady, the better. Gift her a nice Franzen box set, a fresh copy of Infinite Jest or the complete works of Dave Eggers, so that she may better learn to center her recreational reading around fictional middle-aged white men instead of fictional people who aren’t as important and interesting as they are.