Seeing Green ~ Geek Love Review

Geek Love

I joined a book club and last month we read Geek Love by Katherine Dunn. It’s about a carny family of freaks. Among other things it involves a cult in which converts choose to cut off parts of their bodies one joint at a time  –starting with the digits of fingers and toes, moving to arms and legs until they are left helpless on their bellies with nothing but a torso and head.

Yes it’s gross but after all its a tale of envy, jealousy, shame, greed and the desire for normalcy. The author’s metaphor asks us to reflect on the ways we choose to become helpless when we deny the parts of ourselves and our lives that we don’t like or can’t accept. Some of the people in my book club didn’t like this late 80’s novel, but if you have an adventurous imagination you might enjoy the read.

The book is filled with descriptions of green. I was surprised that no one else in the book club noticed this. I’m more of a visual reader than I realized.

  • Her gums are knobby and a faintly iridescent green.

  • I get an instant glimpse of her long legs, sometimes flashing bare through the slits in her startling green kimono.

  • The rotten edge of the sky was moldering into arsenic green when the light of the tent went out.

  • I nod my head at her pale green face.

  • They came out of his eyes as a green liquid that dripped to the ground making puddles.

  • He had a room of his own and three sets of green pajamas.

Eli Leon’s Green Collections

Around the same time I was reading Geek Love I had another visit with Eli Leon. His entire house is bathed in green. He has green curtains in his living room window. He has collections of green rags, vacuums, and vintage trinkets, toys, and tools of all sorts arranged in beautiful, fantastic tableaus throughout his house.

I asked Eli if green was his favorite color and a smile lighted his face when he said yes. I told him that green was my favorite color too.

Green is the color of the heart chakra. It’s the color of growth as well as decay. I suppose there are as many meanings to green as there are shades of the heart.

How about you? What is the emotional range of your favorite colors? Or add your favorite GREEN photo. I just installed a new plugin that allows you to submit a photo with your comment!

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28 Responses to Seeing Green ~ Geek Love Review

  1. Kelly says:

    A very bizarre but compelling book, I think I liked it?

  2. Jim Kellough says:

    At one time before Mr.Science began wheeling and dealing in color.notions,
    ‘green’ was a primary color. Sure ! Then they gave a bit of a wrongheaded secondary slot.. oh oh oh. Not good. Let us all remind ourselves :: Green is My Primary Color until the flowers pop out.

  3. christina says:

    Right now in the ponds of SH my favorite greens: lotus leaves & duck weed… (so glad you are posting again but dying of curiosity about the summer schedule plan…)

  4. Since childhood, yellow has been my favorite color! Always cheerful! I also gravitate towards saturated vibrant colrs like oranges, hot pink, and warm greens paired with white in my quilts. Green is a very soothing color to me, like the green i see outside my window.

  5. Susan K says:

    Green has been a favorite color since I was very young. I love grass green, lime green, olive green, blue green, yellow green…. If it’s green I love it! Love the greens in Eli’s house.

  6. Angela O. says:

    I read Geek Love with my book club a few years ago with similar reactions, confusion, dislike. I picked it and I still get teased every now and then, haha! I do enjoy your thoughts on it, though. I’d never really thought about the connection to greed, jealousy, envy, etc. in a personal sense. It’s a twisted world, kind of turns things upside down, what’s normal. Kind of gives you perspective on what is normal to you, what strange lengths we go to for what our own society considers normalcy. After reading your post, I might read the book again!

    Also, I hadn’t noticed the reoccurance of green either, but it makes sense, since green signifies envy and greed. A subliminal message, reminds me of the color red in the movie Sixth Sense. I didn’t notice it the first time through, but the second time I wondered how I could have missed it; it was everywhere!

    • sherrilynn says:

      Thanks Angela, I’m so glad to hear from someone who has actually read the book. I know there are some disturbing scenes in that book but shame is a very disturbing emotion. I bet your book club does give you a hard time for having picked it! The person who picked it for our group was one of the people who disliked it the most, but I was glad I read it.

  7. patty says:

    Thanks for all the great pictures! What a wonderful collection of things – loved the green glass elephant. I liked how there were shots of other colors amongst the sea of green – like the orange robot figure. I am not a green person except for lime and yellow greens. I never wear green and the only green you would find in my house is a pottery pitcher that belonged to my grandmother and a Fire King batter bowl I picked up at an auction. Turquoise and yellow always makes me smile whether they are separate or together.

  8. Amanda says:

    I so enjoyed this post- and all the comments. I love the tracking of the creative impulse- the noticing of the green, green everywhere. And the photos- experiencing the visuals too.

  9. Rossie says:

    I love many colors. So many. But green is special to me for sure and I’m currently on the hunt for a dress to wear as a wedding dress. And I want it to be GREEN.

  10. Lynda M O says:

    Green – favorite color for over fifty years. All shades, hues, tints and combinations with blue to make the teal line excite me too. I chose this luscious green cotton for the warp in my weaving class this semester at Richmond Art Center.

  11. john wiercioch says:

    Is your green the same as my green? A fun and interesting video short.
    http://www.minds.com/blog/view/89117/is-your-red-the-same-as-my-red

    • sherrilynn says:

      Such a great resource John. Thanks for sharing it. I recommend it. The way color works is fascinating. I’ve noticed that I see color differently in my left eye from my right eye. Through the right eye I see things with a slightly more yellow hue.

  12. john wiercioch says:

    I love Elon’s various collections, especialy the line up of electroluxes! Green has always been my favorite color–although I didn’t consciously consider it, this 3 x 4 ft. painting is first thing one sees on entering my home.

  13. Chesley says:

    I love all things green, although I haven’t been wearing it as much as I usually do when I think about my clothes choices for the past couple of weeks. I dream of having this Italian green glitter floor tile in my kitchen one day.

    • sherrilynn says:

      Woa! Would I love to have a kitchen floor that looks like this. Is there such a thing?!

      • Chesley says:

        Yes!
        I got samples from a flooring store about 7 years ago – I guess it is still being made. The tiles are from a manufacturer called Amtico, I think they are quite expensive, but a girl can dream!!!

  14. sherrilynn says:

    Hi Jil – here’s your photo. I added a new plugin so anyone can add a photo of their favorite green. See the “Choose File” button under the “Submit” button. Add photo before submitting.

  15. Victor says:

    Perhaps this (the greenness) is why I love Mt. Tamalpais and Muir Woods so much.

  16. Jil Browne says:

    Your post was the source of a huge smiled when I considered why I can never seem to part with one really old pair of knitting needles I never use. They are the most wonderful shade of green, as are many things in my home, and could so easily slip into Eli’s jar of green needles. Upon seeing that photo my instant thought was that he should have my green needles. I’m still smiling at the thought.

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