A Letter to Jane Austen on her 238th birthday:
Dear Miss Austen,
First off, let me congratulate you on looking remarkably well for hitting your 238th birthday. Rarely does anyone make it to this one so in tact. But you, you keep getting lovelier with age.
We, the Jane Austen Book Club of Puget Sound, are excited to be celebrating your day and plan to do the following in your honor:
* eat tasty treats
* drink fun beverages
* play wonderful games
* open, admire, steal, and steal back presents
- I truly think you would love this game - though I feel it's poorly named.
You, our dear Jane Austen, continue to provide our club with joy, friendship, intellectual conversation and discussion. The feminists, the satirists, the traditionalists, the romantics - they all find reasons to read your stories. Articles, reviews, blogs, re-imaginings, full bodied research studies - they are nonstop.
And Hollywood can't get enough of you (your central themes continue to reverberate with audiences even if the directors take liberties with overtly romantic aspects). You have your critics, of course, whom we purposefully and successfully overthrow with our knowledge and intelligence - but that's what makes you so great. Even in the face of the haters, both past and present, you continue to outsmart us all.
We appreciate your advice:
On playing dumb: " A woman especially, if she have the misfortune of knowing anything, should conceal it as well as she can" (northanger abbey)
On the ideal guy: "All I want in a man is someone you rides bravely, dances beautifully, sings with vigor, reads passionately and whose taste agrees in every point with my own (Sense + Sensibility)
We appreciate your wit:
on prejudice: "Where there is a disposition to dislike, a motive will never be wanting" (Lady Susan)
"I do not want people to be very agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them a great deal" (letter)
We love that so many people can relate to your stories and that your characters are still so relevant today. We wish we could invent a time machine to jump back a few hundred years and stop your sister from burning all the letters that would probably show a different side of you. But we understand, and even get to witness, your snarkier personality. Some of the quips you make aren't the nicest and no one wants to unintentionally embarrass someone else.
Intentionally, however....we'd love to know which characters are actual people in your life...but I digress.
So a toast, to you Miss Austen, and your continued success as an author and heroine in our time. May we continue enjoying your wit and humor, and find new ways to explore your writings and works.
To another 238 years of Jane Austen! May you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! and we hope you'll join us at the next meeting! Please use the "contact us" page above to receive mo