"This Friday-Saturday is our annual Women's Retreat at my church. It's one of my favorite 24 hours of the year, because we enjoy each other, we laugh, we cry, we support each other ... and all of that good stuff! So, since I am in the WR mode, let's talk about women in your life!"1. Name a woman author you very much love to read.
Gail Collins, for social commentary.2. Name a woman from the Bible with whom you would like to enjoy a nice long coffee talk.
Jodi Picoult, for a thinking person's fiction.
Barbara Brown Taylor, for mindfulness.
All three of these women make me think, and all are excellent writers. The photo at the top of this post is from my review of When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present by Gail Collins (2009), but it absolutely does NOT show what we "housewives" of the time wore while cleaning the house. I wore jeans long before it was considered appropriate for adult women. If you click on the names of these three writers, you'll see some of what I've posted about each of them on this blog.
Rebekah, wife of Isaac and mother of Jacob and Esau, is the first woman in the Bible who is said to have had twins. In Genesis 25:21-28, the twins "struggled together within her," and so did my twins though in 1960 there were no ultrasounds to tell me I was expecting more than one. When I went to bed one night, "the baby" seemed to suddenly stand up. Once I had the twins, I wondered if maybe the one underneath was struggling because she was between her sister, who was pressing her down, and the bones of my spine, which were poking her. Why do I choose Rebekah? Because she tried to understand her world and wanted to do something about it. We would probably call her a control freak.3. Name a famous woman from history with whom you would like to have lunch.
Eleanor Roosevelt was first lady when I was born in 1940. Eleanor vs. Ike, a 2008 novel by Robin Gerber, is hiding in a box somewhere in my apartment. When I find the right box, I'll read this alternative history of a political campaign between the unforgettable Eleanor and the popular war hero Gen. Dwight David Eisenhower, known as Ike. I was twelve when Ike was elected in 1952, but what fun if Eleanor had become the first woman president. Will it happen in this book?4. Name a living famous or infamous woman with whom you would like to go out to dinner.
I'd be happy to go to dinner with any of the three in #1, or any of the women I imagined at my Thanksgiving table this past November. There's some overlap of these two lists, ha! Here's the Thanksgiving list, edited to include only those still living.5. If you could be SuperWoman (o.k., I know you already ARE), what three special powers would you like to have?
Barbara Brown Taylor (on both lists)To Love As God Loves exactly and succinctly expresses my theology, when God is defined as love.
Jodi Picoult (on both lists)
Laurie Halse Anderson
Roberta C. Bondi
Sue Monk Kidd
Susan Beth Pfeffer
Teleportation, so I could be in another place instantly, because it's the next-best thing to being able to be in two places at once, something they failed to teach me in seminary.More important than WHO I named is WHY that person interests me in the first place. If you answer these questions — or any one or two of them — tell me what's special about her.
Time travel, since I love to read books about time travel.
Communication skills, which I used to teach, but especially the ability to "read" body language and pick up on unspoken cues.
By the way, did you know yesterday was International Women's Day?