October 21, 2009
Dear Fellow Spinster:
There is a lot wrong with the world today, but I have an antidote that has so far escaped mainstream media attention: more modesty. Sneer if you like! Modesty — or prudery — has been too long out of fashion. And while we’re extolling the virtues of the financial and economic variety, let me make a bold suggestion: we should be wiser in our estimation of Love and stricter in our demands upon it. Or, as Jack Hubbell, a beloved teacher of mine, once said, “it is not important whether or not you are loved, but whether or not you are loving.”
Strange thought! What does that mean, exactly? What is this thing called, Love? And why, despite the ever widening acceptability of activities not-long-ago-deemed scandaloso, is everyone acting as if they have been shortchanged? Isn’t it about time that we elevated the discussion to something a bit more joyful and exalted?
That is what I am proposing: a modern-day prudery for women and men, one that enables us to stop cheapening ourselves until we no longer have anything to hide—whatever it is. I bring to this my own little secrets: a history of mischief, Latin Lovers, motorcycles and—until recently—five years of teaching Sunday School. My parents and one sister are deceased; I don’t have kids, a spouse, or job; I dream constantly about movie stars and politicians. I am, in other words, a modern-day spinster, always curious about the world and frequently cranky about what it offers as explanations and role models. That is what The Modern Christian Spinster’s Guide to Love in the 21st Century is about: things deemed proper and things deemed not and why it all matters. Welcome and please try and behave yourselves!