[This week it was back—the very popular annual post-Valentine’s non-favorites series, in which I AmericanStudied some of those things that just don’t quite do it for me. Leading up to the annual crowd-sourced airing of grievances, which could always use more griping in comments!]
Matthew Teutsch Tweets, “I would have to say Andrew Jackson &, even though I like the writing, The Great Gatsby.” He adds, “I do find Nick Carraway a fascinating narrator. Wrote this a while back.”
Joe Fruscione goes with, “Henry James. Big ol’ meh.” He adds, “Also: Deadpool. I just don’t get it.” On James, Matthew responds, “Coming back to James, after a few years, I liked him. Granted, I was reading shorter works, such as “Daisy Miller.”
Rachel Weeks Blight nominates, “HMH history/geography textbooks (iBooks and paper). I use them because they are cheap and basic methods for covering info that might appear on a standardized text someday and I get something for the kids' homeschool portfolios, but I hate their over-reliance on History Channel videos. Speaking of which, I also have a love/hate relationship with the History Channel. It's like the Red Lobster of channels: I have high hopes for what could be and am always disappointed.”
Paige Swarbrick writes, “I dislike the ‘memoirs’ that are touted as completely real but turn out to be mostly untrue. Two that come to mind are A Million Little Pieces by James Frey and Smashed: Story of a Drunked Girlhood by Koren Zailckas.”
Matt Chambers votes for, “Current political and social commentary in the US that either draws shallow comparisons to the 1930s/40s or treats events as exceptional (for example, I've been living under a pretty similarly awful regime for over a year now).”
Kisha Tracy adds Catcher in the Rye, noting, “I find it insufferable,” to which Quintin Burks responds, “I completely agree!”
Maggi Smith-Dalton writes, “I have had a strong opinion on this for some time, however I will not annouce it publicly to fellow AmStudies/history folks any more. I've had it with that, frankly. Suffice to say, I feel the mess we're in right now in our country has been seeded, however inadvertently, however unintentionally, by the things I have worried about in our community for some years. Don't forget I have been in the public sphere for most of my professional life.”
Diego Ubiera nominates The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.
Tim McCaffrey notes that the phrase “in my heart of hearts” “makes me cringe every time.” He adds, “Also, the work of Joseph Heller never clicked with me.”
Laura Mulligan Thomas goes with two “phrases in education circle these days”: “sharing out” and “have a conversation around it.”
Nicole Sterbinsky writes, “This has never happened to me personally but I hate hearing it, ‘You look good for x-amount of kids.’ Or ‘You look good for a mom.’ It's a backhanded compliment on quite a few levels.”
And we’ll end with Jeff Renye’s pitch-perfect nomination: The Art of the Deal.
Next series starts Monday,
PS. Responses to these non-favorites? Others you’d share? Join the communal gripe-fest!
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