Yesterday morning, at Booklist CoffeeTM, I turned to Katharine Fronk and said, “The Artichoke Is a Lonely Hunter.”
“The Great Broccolini,” she replied.
“Are you speaking in code?” asked Brad Hooper.
Katharine and I had been following, enjoying, and contributing to the #VeggieLit hashtag started by Chris Vaccari of Sterling Publishing (@christhebookie). Naturally, the Booklist staff started throwing out their own contributions, prompting me to remark, “this is like live tweeting.”
“You mean a conversation?” came the inevitable retort.
Well, yes and no. Twitter memes mimic conversation in that each participant vies to one-up the other—but there’s no eye contact. And, true enough, we were losing eye contact around Table 3 in Miriam’s, the break room in the basement of ALA. People were looking at their laps, only raising their heads when they had a new title—”Don’t Let the Pigeon Peas Drive the Bus”—to contribute.
Then, in a stroke of genius, following a particularly long pause, Katharine said, “We should do Cheese Lit . . . Jane Gruyere.”
And #CheeseLit was born.