For the past few days I've been reading Andy Mozina's collection of short stories, The Women Were Leaving the Men. Bonnie Jo recommended it on her blog and the title was intriguing, so I decided to give it a go. All the stories up to the title story were really incredible in the range of voices and imagination that Mozina brought to the table. Beach, just a few pages long, was especially good, but I've really enjoyed them all and so I looked forward to reading The Women Were Leaving the Men. Others give it high marks, but I'm not sure why. It's flat, unimagined, dull. I thought Mozina might say something profound about society, but really I got the feeling he was talking about groups of people who had never loved each other at all. Maybe that is the profound statement, that we live in a society that is full of structured relationships but devoid of passion and love. It's hard for me to imagine the world in this way. Maybe, too, I should have known that you can't talk about relationships in this group scenario sort of way, that nothing good is going to come of it, that we're all quirky individuals, and I like it that way. What was I thinking? Obviously I wasn't thinking.