We'll celebrate a woman for anything, as long as it's not her talent.
January 30, 2015 1:14 AM   Subscribe

The celebrated Australian author Colleen McCullough, probably best known for The Thorn Birds, has died at 77. McCullough's contribution to writing contributed well after her most famous book and she will be sadly missed. What has caused ire has been the way that her obituary was written in the Australian national newspaper, The Australian, where the second line refers to her physical beauty and weight. The Guardian compares this with other obituaries of people who do not have to be classified by weight or beauty or, as you would know them, men.
posted by nfalkner (72 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
 
Fuck the oz, lets talk about the author. Seriously don't give that tedious paper any attention at all.

Though to be honest, Thorn Birds was the only book of hers I think I read. Wasn't there a TV movie with Sigrid Thornton (natch) that was quite good?
posted by wilful at 1:23 AM on January 30, 2015 [6 favorites]


Good heavens no, that was Rachel Ward, and Richard Chamberlain in his king of the mini-series period.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 1:43 AM on January 30, 2015 [7 favorites]


My recollection is Richard Chamberlain and not good.
posted by biffa at 1:43 AM on January 30, 2015


Local paper here in New Zealand (owned by Australian Fairfax company) had fun with this utterly outrageous, obscene article with sample obits from long dead male, and plain, authors. For example:

William Shakespeare
Thin-nosed, and certainly balding, William Shakespeare was nevertheless a decent poet with an ear for dialogue.


or

Leo Tolstoy
Grizzled, and certainly growing that Kelly beard to cover up his plain features, Leo Tolstoy nevertheless knew how to hold a pen and use it.


Sometimes I wonder if our Trans-Tasman cousins understand what century we are living in.
posted by vac2003 at 1:43 AM on January 30, 2015 [56 favorites]


.
posted by edeezy at 1:54 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


Australia is Rupert Murdoch's private fiefdom, and as such its paper of record is the unfiltered Murdochian Id, replete with reactionary political views and a bias as shameless as anything on FOXNews. A good longform piece on The Australian's bias is “Bad News: Murdoch's Australian and the Shaping of the Nation” by Robert Manne, published as a Quarterly Essay a few years ago.

Also, there is a surplus of anti-Gillard misogyny coursing through the Australian cultural sphere yet to be used up, so the sheilas are going to cop it for a while yet.
posted by acb at 1:57 AM on January 30, 2015 [8 favorites]


Plain of feature, and certainly overweight, she was, nevertheless, a woman of wit and warmth.

That's such a hilariously absurd sentence I'm honestly surprised it was printed in a national newspaper -- even given low expectations. "Nevertheless"? Seriously? I mean it basically just straight-up says "despite being ugly and fat, she still somehow managed to be funny and kind." It's so blatantly offensive I'm not even offended; I'm impressed.
posted by eugenen at 2:02 AM on January 30, 2015 [71 favorites]


Not been a good month for Oz media, what with that sports presenter asking a female tennis star to do a twirl.
posted by GallonOfAlan at 2:17 AM on January 30, 2015


.
posted by Autumn Leaf at 2:17 AM on January 30, 2015


probably best known for The Thorn Birds

I was under the impression that the Masters of Rome series was more popular, but maybe that's because of my location. I don't think The Thorn Birds has appeared on national TV that much.

The book about the siege of Troy was good, or at least I remember I liked it when I read it years ago. Time to get her in English this time, I guess.
posted by sukeban at 2:26 AM on January 30, 2015


you know those shitty sites that try and rip off the onion but just fail in to sounding like assholes because that's the only direction you can go with bad satire?

yea, this sounds like that.
posted by emptythought at 2:26 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


Crikey has a possible explanation, although certainly not an excuse. A long ago pre-prepared obit written by someone also no longer around, that they dumped in the paper late in the production cycle. Arseholes.
posted by Jimbob at 2:38 AM on January 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


After reading her wikipedia bio, I'm instantly intrigued.

I was just about to ask, "Is The Australian a Murdoch Mouthpiece?" (and thanks to acb I had to look no further to confirm my suspicions). With copy like that, how could it be anything else?
posted by Homemade Interossiter at 2:42 AM on January 30, 2015


I was just about to ask, "Is The Australian a Murdoch Mouthpiece?"

The only reason it exists is to be a Murdoch mouthpiece. It loses tens of millions of dollars a year.
posted by Jimbob at 3:15 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


The Oz is a hive of scum and villainy, so this is really no surprise.

There have been some serious gems arising out of the #myozobituary hastag on Twitter though.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 3:18 AM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]




A bunch of people have been writing their own #myozobituary tweets. Some are hilarious and coming from unexpected quarters.


Craig Ferguson: Although a shouty malodorous vulgarian he nevertheless enjoyed most episodes of house hunters international. #MyOzObituary

Neil Gaiman: Although his beard looked like someone had glued it on & his hair would have been unconvincing as a wig, he married a rockstar #MyOzObituary


And.... mine was: She claimed youth,height and athleticism.She was actually a short,squat and sad old drunk but dreamed of life Murdoch-free #myozobituary
posted by taff at 3:42 AM on January 30, 2015 [14 favorites]


My mom, an Episcopal priest ordained in the early days that women could be has always said half seriously, half jokingly that she wants to write a memoir titled "Although A Woman", based on the number of times that phrase has begun sentences describing her.
posted by Polyhymnia at 3:57 AM on January 30, 2015 [47 favorites]


"Despite a fondness for flannel and a nose that could have been used as an Olympic ski jump, Polyhymnia nevertheless learned to play the violin, and could even remember all of the words to the songs she sang most of the time." #myozobituary
posted by Polyhymnia at 3:57 AM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


I was always kinda baffled about the popularity of Thorn Birds. Way too many meandering and unresolved plot threads, and a totally unnecessary, unexplained 20-year gap. Ok, so there was some major forbidden sex there, yeah, I just answered my own question.

.
posted by Melismata at 4:33 AM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


"Despite her tragedy of a chin and an extra 10 pounds, not to mention being female, bunderful nevertheless was a decent researcher, singer and ukulele player."

I loved the Thorn Birds - I remember a neighbor giving it to me when I was a teenager, and I remember being shocked and intrigued by the relatively chaste sex scenes, which I may have read more than once. Later I found a used copy of The Ladies of Missalonghi - at a thrift store or a library sale, probably - and read it several times; it was an adorable book.
posted by bunderful at 4:34 AM on January 30, 2015


.
posted by bunderful at 4:41 AM on January 30, 2015


I believe this is what the grandparents call "damning with faint praise".

Anyway, those books of hers were nice enough, but sure heavy.
posted by clvrmnky at 4:54 AM on January 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


.

I usually suggest her Rome series to anyone who asks about historical fiction worth reading.
posted by CincyBlues at 4:57 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


I loved the Rome books, the sequences of debate; dinner party; war; catty letter; orgy; repeat, and I learnt tonnes from them. All the illustrations she did herself, sketches of specific or anonymous busts in various museums that she would fly off to from her Pacific island home. Heck of an enviable talent, and life.

.
posted by runincircles at 5:00 AM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


I actually have not read The Thorn Birds, but I loved her novella, The Ladies of Missalonghi. A very unusual (and feminist) love story, about a spinster woman who is systematically defrauded by the men of her family, who marries a rich young man who helps her (and her aunts) get their just rewards. That doesn't sound terribly feminist on the face of it, so you'll just have to take my word for it.
posted by peacheater at 5:01 AM on January 30, 2015 [6 favorites]


It's not just obituaries. I was reading a New Yorker article the other week, and the author blatantly described the man in terms of career and athleticism, and the woman in terms of hair color and weight. There's just no excuse for having that get past the first glance by an editor, much less into print, particularly when people are being profiled (or obituaried) for their professional accomplishments.

I see it all the time and it just rubs me the wrong way. I pretty much expect it in bad genre fiction (though the next time I have to read a scene where the woman looks at herself naked in the mirror as a way to be able to describe her body I will throw the book across the room) but I expect better from literary fiction and decent quality non-fiction and journalism.
posted by Dip Flash at 5:02 AM on January 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think I actually prefer the New Zealand paper's take on obituaries--for all person. Thanks vac2003
posted by rmhsinc at 5:07 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm not even going to touch anything about her obit. I imagine she's probably laughing her arse off at the uproar, wherever she is now, because that's the sort of person she was.

But I was amazed to learn that she was born and raised less than 100 km from my hometown. Colleen McCullough was born and bred in Wellington (which is known in our house at the place with the shittiest McDonalds between here and Canberra, but it has awesome caves and an old phosphate mine which is utterly fascinating). And instead of learning that in school, inspiring country kids to reach for the stars, they are forced to watch Finding Nemo in Geography class, I kid you not.

Anyway, back on topic. McCullough wrote Tim which will always be one of my favourite novels.

.
posted by malibustacey9999 at 5:20 AM on January 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


Can we send a box of glitter to the obituary department at the Oz? Or, better yet, poisonous spiders? (Could we do poisonous spiders, glitter, and foam packing peanuts?)
posted by Anne Neville at 5:40 AM on January 30, 2015 [10 favorites]


.
posted by Ik ben afgesneden at 5:45 AM on January 30, 2015


At least the mocking is good and hilarious.

I've been meaning to check out her work sometime as I like historical fiction a great deal. I specifically didn't read The Ladies of Missalonghi as I had heard that it was a blatant rip off of Lucy Maud Montgomery's The Blue Castle (which was a favorite book when I was younger), but the way peacheater is describing it makes sound not like a rip off, but a revenge fantasy version. Which I now very much want to read.
posted by JustKeepSwimming at 5:56 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


So many gems located through #myozobituary! (The link is to an article quoting McCullough: "Things happen to me, and there doesn't seem to be a way out of it. Birds crap on my head, dogs hump my leg, rats laugh at me... and don't say rats can't laugh, because they can.")
posted by BibiRose at 5:58 AM on January 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


"Although a man, Pyrogenesis nevertheless failed to do anything worthwhile with his privileged and secluded life." #myozobituary
posted by Pyrogenesis at 6:01 AM on January 30, 2015 [4 favorites]


McCullough wrote Tim which will always be one of my favourite novels.

Also one of Mel Gibson's earliest films, shot while Mad Max (the first one) was still in post-production.
posted by rory at 6:04 AM on January 30, 2015


Rupert Murdoch's obituaries are going to be hilarious.
posted by almostmanda at 6:08 AM on January 30, 2015 [9 favorites]


I spent a few weeks at the beach reading The Thorn Birds when I was 12 or 13. It was delicious.

.
posted by sallybrown at 6:24 AM on January 30, 2015 [2 favorites]


almostmanda: Rupert Murdoch's obituaries are going to be hilarious.

…and long over-due. :7(
posted by wenestvedt at 6:32 AM on January 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


It's bad taste, but I agree. Not that I imagine his media empire needs him to keep on in the same vein.
posted by Braeburn at 6:40 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


The "although" is clearly bad, but "wit and warmth" also kind of seems like damning with faint praise. Wit and kindness are immensely good traits, but they're also what you say about your dead grandmother (not my dead grandmother, of course; "wit and vitriol" might be more accurate). She's a famous writer and these are basically still just personal characteristics. Mentioning her appearance is bad enough, implying that being unattractive precludes wit and warmth makes it worse, and the "bless her her sweet little woman heart" quality of "wit and warmth" does nothing to help matters.

Bitter and unpleasant, and certainly a loon, she was, nevertheless, capable of drinking a whole bunch. #myozbituary
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 6:44 AM on January 30, 2015 [12 favorites]


The reason for that is that she wasn't taken seriously as a writer by the sort of person who wrote that obituary because her books have female characters who think and feel for themselves rather than just observing Serious Man Adventures from the sidelines.
posted by No-sword at 7:04 AM on January 30, 2015 [4 favorites]


.



Plain of feature, and certainly overweight, she was, nevertheless, a woman of wit and warmth.

That sentence is amazingly well crafted; the first half is horribly dismissive of the subject but the "nevertheless" just takes it to a whole new level of offensive "fuck you" insult. I admire it, because I would have to work hard to write something that appears as casually comtemptous. My own wordsmithing skills are too pedestrian I guess.

Here's mine: Plain in looks, and certainly modest of intellect, his privileged white male status nevertheless meant a modestly successful life.
posted by nubs at 7:19 AM on January 30, 2015 [11 favorites]


and then I prove my point by using "modest" twice in the same sentence.
posted by nubs at 7:45 AM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


And then there's the part where she was a fucking NEUROPHYSIOLOGIST for the first half of her life, before she started writing best-selling novels and moving to exotic islands and marrying hunky younger men.

Not bad for a fat lady. Jesus fucking Christ.
posted by Sublimity at 8:12 AM on January 30, 2015 [44 favorites]


I was always kinda baffled about the popularity of Thorn Birds. Way too many meandering and unresolved plot threads, and a totally unnecessary, unexplained 20-year gap. Ok, so there was some major forbidden sex there, yeah, I just answered my own question.

I read that thing while attending a Catholic boarding school - as did every girl in study hall. We passed it around in a brown cover saying 'David Copperfield', the school edition of which was conveniently the same size. It was simply amazing. Entire convent classes whispering in corners and the people who hadn't got it yet running away to avoid finding out what happened. I don't even recall most of what happened but it was AMAZING. Of that I am sure.

So, go, you Colleen McCullough: you were the person that brought an entire school together.
posted by lesbiassparrow at 8:15 AM on January 30, 2015 [10 favorites]


I specifically didn't read The Ladies of Missalonghi as I had heard that it was a blatant rip off of Lucy Maud Montgomery's The Blue Castle (which was a favorite book when I was younger), but the way peacheater is describing it makes sound not like a rip off, but a revenge fantasy version.
I have read The Blue Castle too (though not at that formative age, which does seem to make a difference), and while there are some similarities, The Ladies of Missalonghi makes me feel entirely different. While with The Blue Castle, I was primarily concerned with the protagonist, with The Ladies of Missalonghi, I was more interested in seeing all the (horrible, sexist) members of the family get their comeuppance -- it's pure wish fulfillment fantasy for sure.
posted by peacheater at 8:18 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


"Full of face, with a stomach that jiggled disgustingly like some sort of gelatinous food product, Santa Claus nevertheless managed to possess some sort of generous impulse for children worldwide" #myozobituary

She deserved much better.
posted by ilana at 8:26 AM on January 30, 2015 [7 favorites]


How delightful to realize that so many others are Blue Castle fans! (I started typing that sentence and realized it was AWFULLY Anne-esque.)

Fat, loud and bespectacled, she nevertheless managed good taste in stereo equipment, quality footwear and family automobiles. #myozbituary

Oh god; this is frighteningly close to how my mother would probably describe my life.

posted by Madamina at 8:32 AM on January 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


For reasons beyond conjecture, Canadian print media seem to have a low-level obsession with the age of the subjects of their articles, no matter how irrelevant this might be. It is not infrequently that I will read a mention of the funeral of a foreign head of state and see that "Canada will be represented by Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird, 45." Okay then.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:41 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


" Australia is Rupert Murdoch's private fiefdom"

I'm willing to believe that he's Lex Luthor.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 8:41 AM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


I loved the book Tim. Colleen McCullough did seem like quite a character.
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 8:57 AM on January 30, 2015


I watched Bridesmaids for the first time about a month ago, because I am way behind the times. After watching it (and loving it), I Googled Melissa McCarthy because, though I'd heard the name, I didn't know much about her. (Because I am behind the times.)

Pretty much every single link made reference to or flat-out mentioned her weight in some way, or her weight loss, or her clothing line for regular-sized (i.e., overweight) women. It was really, really disgusting, and it made my stomach turn. I felt so BAD for her. She's a hilarious, very talented woman, and her talent is always preceded by her body in print.

I just went and looked again, and it's actually not as bad now, because news about her being cast in the upcoming Ghostbusters movie has floated to the top of Google's search results. That doesn't change things in any real way, though. It's a simple fact: If you're a woman, and anything about your body is notable in any way, it's going to be the part of you that's most talked about -- not what you're good at, or what you've accomplished, or who you are. I can't really even think of anyone in the public eye who's overcome that, though hopefully someone can point out an exception or two.

(Well, maybe Ayn Rand. Ha!)
posted by mudpuppie at 9:04 AM on January 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


Would Colleen McCullough be classified by The Australian's culture-warriors as a “Cultural Marxist”?
posted by acb at 9:13 AM on January 30, 2015


And since everyone else here is doing it: Tall, noisy, and almost as funny as he thought he was, he nonetheless failed to reach his potential in every endeavor he couldn't manage to avoid.
posted by wenestvedt at 9:14 AM on January 30, 2015


Oh man, so rude. The description of her husband! Kind of him to marry her. I dont really believe in an afterlife but I'm going to make an exception here because I hope she can see this, a person deserves to know they inspired such bitchy hilarity.
posted by fshgrl at 9:44 AM on January 30, 2015


.
Thornbirds, my awakening to breaking sexual taboos. She did not deserve that Obituary.


myozobituary (not mine but one I would love to write). "With a face only a mother could love and a nasty arrogant personality nevertheless he was a sketchy writer with a prodigious member."
posted by smudgedlens at 10:13 AM on January 30, 2015 [1 favorite]


Am I the only one who watched The Thornbirds as an adolescent then got the book and copied out all the bird-killing-itself-to-make-art passages until I had them memorized because ah, youth?

There is a legend about a bird which sings just once in its life, more sweetly than any other creature on the face of the earth. From the moment it leaves the nest it searches for a thorn tree, and does not rest until it has found one. Then, singing among the savage branches, it impales itself upon the longest, sharpest spine. And, dying, it rises above its own agony to outcarol the lark and the nightingale. One superlative song, existence the price. But the whole world stills to listen, and God in His heaven smiles. For the best is only bought at the cost of great pain… Or so says the legend.

Each of us has something within us which won't be denied, even if it makes us scream aloud to die. We are what we are, that's all. Like the old Celtic legend of the bird with the thorn in its breast, singing its heart out and dying. Because it has to, its self-knowledge can't affect or change the outcome, can it? Everyone singing his own little song, convinced it's the most wonderful song the world has ever heard. Don't you see? We create our own thorns, and never stop to count the cost. All we can do is suffer the pain, and tell ourselves it was well worth it.

The bird with the thorn in its breast, it follows an immutable law; it is driven by it knows not what to impale itself, and die singing. At the very instant the thorn enters there is no awareness in it of the dying to come; it simply sings and sings until there is not the life left to utter another note. But we, when we put the thorns in our breasts, we know. We understand. And still we do it. Still we do it.

Well it meant a lot to me when I was fifteen or so, and you deserved a better obit, Ms. McCullough. Thanks for your lovely books.
posted by onlyconnect at 11:05 AM on January 30, 2015 [4 favorites]


RUPERT Murdoch, Australia’s most famous ex-pat of convenience, was a charmer. Lantern jawed, with a face like an old handbag, he was, nevertheless, a man of wit and warmth. In one interview, he said: “I’ve never been into clothes or figure and the interesting thing is I never had any trouble attracting a long string of marriages to extremely beautiful younger women.”
posted by mythical anthropomorphic amphibian at 5:02 PM on January 30, 2015 [5 favorites]


vac2003:Sometimes I wonder if our Trans-Tasman cousins understand what century we are living in.

I can assure you that many of us are as bothered by our government, if not more so. The attack on what used to be a more open and generous culture is horrific.
posted by nfalkner at 6:59 PM on January 30, 2015


vac2003:Sometimes I wonder if our Trans-Tasman cousins understand what century we are living in.

I can assure you that many of us are as bothered by our government, if not more so. The attack on what used to be a more open and generous culture is horrific.


I wasn't talking about the Australian government but a country where the media are so blatantly sexist. As mentioned upthread somewhere the media in Australia can't even interview a female tennis player without displaying the utterly crass sexism that is all too prevalent within the broader society.
posted by vac2003 at 7:55 PM on January 30, 2015


Local paper here in New Zealand (owned by Australian Fairfax company) had fun with this utterly outrageous, obscene article with sample obits from long dead male, and plain, authors.
(snip)
Sometimes I wonder if our Trans-Tasman cousins understand what century we are living in.

I understand the mutual tradition of bashing the other member of the Antipodean states, but I have to defend my adopted country a little, here - the piece you cite was written by Joel Meares, Arts editor of the Sydney Morning Herald.
posted by gingerest at 7:58 PM on January 30, 2015


My partner just pointed out that the McCullough obit sounds like it was written by Frank Devine, who wrote and curated most of The Oz's obituaries for many years (and whose delightful daughter Miranda continues and extends Frank's fine journalistic tradition).

So it's quite possible it was written years ago by an old right-wing misogynist curmudgeon with an inflated sense of his own comedic ability…
posted by Pinback at 10:06 PM on January 30, 2015


So it's quite possible it was written years ago by an old right-wing misogynist curmudgeon with an inflated sense of his own comedic ability…

Sure. But it was then edited and brought up to date by whomever warms the obits chair now, and approved by an editor, neither of whom thought that there was any problem whatsoever with the obvious misogyny.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 11:35 PM on January 30, 2015 [3 favorites]


I wasn't talking about the Australian government but a country where the media are so blatantly sexist.

A) Don't worry, the Australian government is plenty sexist. For example, Tony Abbott dismissing questions from high school girls and demanding 'a bloke's question'. Or the way in which he talks about women in general.

B) The Oz's only actual function is to cheerlead for conservative politics - it's not a profit making enterprise, and has not been for years. In that respect the current government and the Oz are closely linked.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 12:18 AM on January 31, 2015


The only books I ever re-read are the Masters of Rome series, and boy was I glad when they came out in Kindle (if you have seen the size of the hard covers you will know why). I try to get through the series every few years.
I am selfishly sad at her passing, as I know Bob Carr suggested more than once that she write a series about the Good Emperors, and while she always said no I kind of hoped she would, because they would have been fantastic.
posted by Megami at 12:25 AM on January 31, 2015 [1 favorite]


Can't believe I'd never heard of McCullough. Am getting straight on to reading her!

Reading that Oz obit as my first intro to her had me double over in "omg misogyny sucks, it's so ridiculous it hurts" laughter at the part where the author finally writes actual fact... which shows that McCullough had a hell of a mind and guts to go along with it, but he'll be damned if he waxes poetic on that: "After graduation she set up the department of neurophysiology at Sydney’s Royal North Shore Hospital and ran this department for five years." From that point on I may have yelled at my screen a few times as her accomplishments became increasingly outstanding and his prose remained in a tone of "shit, have to write facts."

Love that her personality was such that even in a crap obit, it shines through. Other obits on her are so much richer and more interesting!

#myozobituary - "fraula was never a charmer. Mousy-haired, of wan complexion, entirely unremarkable aside from her height, she was, nevertheless, a woman who somehow made people laugh in several languages."
posted by fraula at 3:51 AM on January 31, 2015 [2 favorites]


Hey, at least our Newspapers stopped having Page 3 girls decades ago.
posted by Hello, I'm David McGahan at 4:49 AM on January 31, 2015


A) Don't worry, the Australian government is plenty sexist. For example, Tony Abbott dismissing questions from high school girls and demanding 'a bloke's question'. Or the way in which he talks about women in general.

B) The Oz's only actual function is to cheerlead for conservative politics - it's not a profit making enterprise, and has not been for years. In that respect the current government and the Oz are closely link


Fair point. I really don't want to get into the "mutual tradition of bashing the other member of the Antipodean states" that ginterest mentioned above. It gets tiresome very quickly.

My point was that the sexism within Australian society is deep rooted and is not the sole preserve of conservative politicians or their cheer-leading newspapers. I do agree with you that their sexism is something so ugly it is almost unbelievable. Tony Abbott seems a particularly egregious example. In my view however he is the product of a society where, to me at least, sexism is pretty pervasive and as such needs to be called out.
posted by vac2003 at 1:32 PM on January 31, 2015




An excerpt from her interview with Andrew Denton on Enough Rope. Full transcript.
posted by Coaticass at 1:42 AM on February 1, 2015


I love how she said her obituary wouldn't be printable!
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:27 PM on February 1, 2015


I adored her Masters of Rome series. Reading them in high school inspired me to major in classical civilization in college (not that I do anything with the major besides kick ass in Trivia Crack). I might have to seek those out on Kindle and have a good re-read in her honor.
posted by saturngirl at 7:42 AM on February 2, 2015


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