You Can Date Boys When You’re Forty: Dave Barry On Parenting And Other Topics He Knows Very Little About
This was a quick, fun read that made me laugh. (I like how his titles are longer than my book reviews.)
Elements Of A Novel*
Men’s Novel [This reminds me of every action novel I’ve ever read.]
Female. Strikingly beautiful. Highly intelligent. Sensitive. Has many feelings. Millions and millions of feelings. Very attractive to men. Also very attractive to women. Also very attractive to vampires if there are any in the plot. Just generally an extremely attractive person.
Male. Masculine. Ruggedly handsome. Brave. Manly. Highly intelligent. Fearless. A renegade and a loner; dislikes authority. Courageous. Strong and very good at fighting, but reluctant to use violence. Understood to possess–although this is never explicitly stated–a huge penis.
Other Principal Characters
The main character’s mother or sister or daughter or childhood friend from whom she has become estranged or has an ambivalent relationship.
Other females whose function is to have long conversations with the main character about her numerous feelings and relationship complexities.
Several strikingly handsome males and/or vampires who are, it goes without saying, powerfully attracted to the main character.
A serial killer or sex pervert basement torturer or powerful politician or businessperson or criminal with numerous hench-persons.
High-ranking yet idiotic police, military or government officials who detest renegade loners.
A highly professional yet beautiful female police or military officer or lawyer with a tough outer shell yet at the same time a certain emotional vulnerability yet at the same time a nice pair of gazombas.
We are gradually introduced to the world of the main character. We slowly begin to understand, through her innermost thoughts and her conversations with other female characters, that, because of some mysterious traumatic incident that occurred in the past, she has deeply conflicted feelings about her complex relationships with her mother, sister, daughter and/or estranged childhood friend. We also are introduced to one or more males to whom the main character is attracted but about whom she has many deeply ambivalent feelings that result in much conflicted thinking going on for pages and pages.
The main character is thrust into a situation where he encounters some wrongdoing being done and, through no fault of his own, must reluctantly beat the living shit out of some hench-persons. This results in a string of mysterious clues that cause the main character to realize that there is an evil plot afoot involving worldwide nuclear destruction or serial killing or sex pervert basement torturing with soldering irons or the president of the United States being a Communist robot or some other hideous evil plot that the main character must courageously try to uncover single-handedly against impossible odds.
Through continued conversations with other female characters, as well as additional lengthy passages of innermost thoughts, we gradually learn more about the complex feelings and relationships of the main character, getting glimpses–but only glimpses–of the mysterious traumatic past incident that is causing her to have so much emotional complexity in her life. At the same time she gradually becomes involved in a deeper and more complex relationship with one or more of the male characters, yet she is unable to commit herself fully to him or them because of so many sensitive innermost ambivalent feelings swarming around inside her like minnows in a bait bucket.
The main character, bravely pursuing the truth, finds his path blocked time and again by hench-persons out of whom he has no choice but to reluctantly beat the living shit. This draws the attention of high-ranking police, military or government officials who naturally get everything completely wrong and focus their suspicions on the main character. They assign, to investigate him, the tough yet beautiful gazomba woman. She and the main character take an instant dislike to each other and soon have amazing sex lasting several days thanks to the awesome power of the unstated but clearly understood Yule log in his undershorts.
As the main character’s feelings reach a raging fever pitch of ambivalence, she has a climactic emotional conversation or encounter involving her mother, sister, daughter or estranged childhood friend, and we finally, after many hundreds of pages, discover the mysterious traumatic past event has caused so much internal conflict and relationship complexity. It turns out to be: a shocking surprise. By finally getting it out into the open, the main character is able to confront it and have many additional pages of conversations and thoughts and feelings about it. In the end she is able, at last, to accept herself as the highly attractive woman she is and to admit the love she feels for one or more of the male characters and possibly allow him to suck out her blood. The book ends here because of the danger that some actual action is about to occur.
The main character and the woman (who has of course fallen in love with him) become ensnared in a hopeless plot predicament from which escape is absolutely, completely one hundred percent impossible, so they are definitely going to die. They respond by having sex of a caliber that would kill a rhinoceros. Then they escape in a very clever and brave way and proceed to an action-packed climax in which the main character, against impossible odds, reluctantly kills a minimum of 135 people en route to discovering the incredible shocking truth, which is: something totally unexpected. With the plot now resolved, the main character and the woman again engage in lovemaking so powerful that it alters worldwide bird migration patterns, although she knows in her heart that he will never settle down with one woman because of his renegade loner lifestyle and massive unstated pelvic salami.
* Source: Chaucer
Your modern musical concert consists of the singer prancing from one side of the stage to the other accompanied by a clot of dancers, everybody frantically performing synchronized dance moves and pelvic thrust, looking like people having sex with invisible partners while being pursued by bees. At times the dancing looks silly, but it serves a vital artistic function; namely, keeping you from noticing that the music (and I say this respectfully) sucks. -location 149