This evening, after volleyball practice, I drove home a couple of the young ladies to their sleepover, and the conversation ended up getting to Jane Austen novels. It turns out that all three of us happen to be big enough Jane Austen fans that we compare people and situations to those in novels. I would not have been aware of this had the subject not turned to it, but all the same it was exceptionally pleasant to talk with them about their favorite Jane Austen novels (one of them, like me, was particularly fond of Persuasion  and both of them loved Pride & Prejudice). I imagine they were very surprised to hear of my own fondness of Jane Austen even though I suppose they might have assumed that I would be at least somewhat quirky already.
They were particularly amused when I told them about being part of the Jane Austen Society when I lived in the Tampa Bay area and that I was the only guy at the meetings. While it may be amusing, as much of my life, it was also not a joke. Being a guy who is quite openly and honestly a huge fan of Jane Austen , I am automatically a fairly unusual person to begin with. I must say, though, that in face to face conversation the subject of Jane Austen does not come up very often, which I suppose is not too surprising, given that the context of talking about romance novels is not necessarily something that would be common in a life of mine, given that it is not particularly romantic (despite my own wishes and inclinations). Likewise, it’s not exactly a subject I am likely to bring up either, for fairly obvious reasons, given that I’m already a fairly unusual person and I figure that giving people more evidence of it is not always a wise plan, even if odd things tend to pop up pretty often in the course of my life.
One of the odd quirks about Portland is that when I moved here I was not aware that the area had a local chapter of the Jane Austen Society of North America, which happens to cover Portland and Southwest Washington . I had looked when I first moved to the area and did not find anything, which I found a bit disappointing. Looking again tonight as I was doing a bit of research, I saw the link to their website, which was pleasing, even if it seems a bit odd that the local chapter is not better known. At any rate, it appears in my car tonight there were enough people to at least indicate that among my friends and acquaintances is enough people to have our own Jane Austen society (and I suspect there are probably a few others among those who read my blog entries). It was a pleasant an unexpected end to a pleasant evening, as far as I was concerned, and I hope those I talked to enjoyed themselves as well.
 See, for example: