Comment: I know there are some folks who are anxious for me to get on with part five of the Brain-Crab story (It Didn’t Have to End Like This), and I did sit down with the intention of writing the next 1000 words or so. Something else was on my mind, and so I wrote it first. I’ll get to the Brain-Crabs. I will. For now, read this. It’s nice and kind of mushy.
Let me tell you an unlikely but true story.
My wife, Lynn, is enamored with the classics by Jane Austen – particularly Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility and Emma. She has the novels and has seen all of the movies based on those novels. Knowing this, I wanted to surprise her with a series of Austen-themed items.
Amazon making all of this easy, I proceeded to place my order.
Jane Austen Note Cards. These contained quotes from the novels and had themed artwork. They were also a complete flop with my wife, who does not write notes to people. She sends email, like the rest of the world.
Accoutrements Jane Austen Action Figure. This one was silly – an action figure of the author, complete with book and quill. Still, my wife adores I Love Lucy and has several of the Lucy Barbie dolls, so I gave it a shot. This was also a flop.
I bought her a Kickstarter card game, Marrying Mr. Darcy, based on Jane Austen’s classic novel, Pride and Prejudice. Each of the players is a heroine who is attempting to marry well. She liked the game and read the rules, but we have yet to play it. I am in no rush.
Pride and Prejudice (Marvel Classics) Graphic Novel. Lynn has read the novels several times. She has seen the movies dozens of times. This was a graphic novel – comic book – based on the classic novel. It was a complete and absolute hit.
She devoured it, commenting on what an interesting medium the graphic novel is. Then she wanted more. I promptly ordered the Marvel versions of Sense and Sensibility and Emma. These were also read immediately, with her interest growing in the different artists and unique approach to telling the stories that are so familiar to her. So I ordered Jayne Eyre: The Graphic Novel, written by Charlotte Bronte, but also a story I know my life loves and in the same genre as Austen’s work.
Next was a trip to Half Price Books, where I directed my dear wife to the shelves with graphic novels. We have been in the store at least twenty times before but she didn’t know where this section was. I then perused the store and an hour later, she emerged from aisle with a stack of six graphic novels she wanted to try out. None were classics – though two were based on the Sherlock Holmes character. There was an X-Men (which I could have never predicted) and several Star Trek themed ones. On our first date, I learned that she liked Star Trek – The Next Generation. Knowing what a rarity it is to find a pretty girl who likes Sci-Fi, I married her. Now, I’ve got her reading comics. I think I can get her into a Princess Leia slave girl outfit in another year or two. If I do – I won’t be telling you about it.
Anyway, Lynn has taken to ordering the books for herself, either from HPB online or Amazon, and she’s developed quite a habit. It’s one I thoroughly encourage. I’ve always appreciated the comic medium, though that is just part of my childhood I never outgrew. I’m an avid collector of Jim Steranko art. Now, my wife has developed a similar appreciation for the genre.
One night, as we lay in bed with Big Bang Theory re-runs playing on the TV, she leaned over and said, “Thank you for my graphic novels.”
She then opened Star Trek Volume 4 and was lost within the frames.
I watched her and smiled. It’s just like the first date, when I found out she liked Star Trek. I’m going to make her mine.
Oh, wait. She is.