Loving Laurie Colwin

During this season of gleeful wanton gluttony, in between gorging on deep-fried turkey and deep-fried Milky Ways (Is there anything deep-fried that doesn’t taste good? Hmmm…no) I’ll be re-reading one of my favorite, favorite, favorite writers: Laurie Colwin.

Laurie Colwin wrote about food and love and domesticity, about joyful misanthropes, levelheaded adulterers, and happy depressives—all in a way that’s both hysterically funny and deeply true. To sit alone at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee, reading her books, is my idea of perfect contentment.

I recently published a piece in the “Recommendations” column of Post Road about her. She died in 1992 at the age of 48…. it makes me unspeakably sad to think that there will be no more books by her. If you’ve never read Laurie Colwin, here are a few titles to start with:

Happy All the Time (a novel)
Another Marvelous Thing (a novel in stories)
Passion and Affect (short stories)
Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen (essays)

Her short story “An Old-Fashioned Story” was adapted into a film called “Ask Me Again,” which was broadcast on PBS on American Playhouse, and is only available now on obscure VHS tapes at public libraries. If your library has it, you must see it. I’m going to make my sister watch it with me again this weekend, as we recuperate on the couch from all our pigging out.

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