Forty-some years ago I was introduced to F. Scott Fitzgerald by someone who influenced my life in profound, sometimes wonderful, and sometimes very difficult, ways. I had always been a reader but he talked to me about books - what he was reading, what I was reading, what new books were coming out, why one story worked and another didn't. No one had ever talked to me about reading and books like that before. And then he told me to read F. Scott Fitzgerald, and he gave me The Great Gatsby. After reading 'Gatsby' I went to the library and found everything by Fitzgerald. One after another I read every novel and every short story. I was blissfully obsessed.
So why this post about Fitzgerald? Because we have been having uncommonly warm weather and that has made the lilacs bud early. And every year when the lilacs bloom I remember one of my favorite passages from Gatsby.