Happy All the Time (Colwin)

This kept striking me as a kind of anti-Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Two life-long friends meet women, who have their own challenges (one bolts — to France, to a monastery – when she needs to escape; the other adopts a tough persona – an emotional shorthand – in order to deal with the world). The men have silly jobs – one manages an arts foundation that processes grants. Some of the language of the grants is pretty funny. The other is an expert in garbage. There are amusing minor characters – a cousin, Gem, a secretary, a baby whisperer, etc.. There are some amusing lines: “She was wearing a kilt, which Vincent had trouble distinguishing from the couch” (31-31). One couple has a baby. They all go fishing. Perhaps the comparison to the Albee play is not apt, but there’s a kind of detachment here — like these people and this story belongs to another time and place.

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