Friday, November 27, 2009

Going To Those Lengths

So far I am only about 70 pages into the book by Gail Collins, When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women From 1960 to the Present, but I've already decided to get another copy of it for my mother for Christmas.

Although I am not accustomed to comparing some of my male colleagues to John F. Kennedy, this passage felt very familiar (and made me laugh out loud):

.. the publisher Katharine Graham recounted how the president had once demanded to know why Adlai Stevenson, the balding, chubby United Nations ambassador, was regarded as so attractive by his many female friends. Told that it was because Stevenson actually listened with interest to what women had to say, the president responded, according to Graham, "Well, I don't say you're wrong, but I'm not sure I can go to those lengths."

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Go Adlai Stephenson! :)

Anonymous said...

I just read that and thoroughly enjoyed it! It's both entertaining and informative and definitely helped me get through my qualifying exams.

HennaHonu said...

And the boyfriend says, "What? He (JFK) was joking."

female Science Professor said...

I was waiting for the "he was joking" comment, and here it is (albeit indirectly).

Dr. Jekyll and Mrs. Hyde said...

Oh good, I was thinking of getting it for my mother and myself too, so I'm glad you're enjoying it.

Now about the other items on the Christmas list...

(Graham's memoir Personal History also had a few such gems.)

Ms.PhD said...

I'm glad you have time to read! Lately I am too busy or stressed out to focus for long

Unbalanced Reaction said...

@HennaHonu (and others): but was he really joking?

Anonymous said...

@Unbalanced reaction: If they can say it, they are thinking it! Though it doesn't mean that's what he'll do!

FrauTech said...

It's one of those man rules: "If what I said can be taken two ways, and one of those ways hurts and offends you, I meant the other one."

But I suspect JFK was not joking, assuming that is a correctly attributed quote (which would not surprise me).

maupMarcker said...

@HennaHonu: The boyfriend was joking.
Well, somebody is joking and it can't be me cause I'm probably humourless (gender predisposition).