I've been doing some sorting and organizing and winnowing of books lately, and came across a book that I think Arthur must have loaned me years ago: Happy All the Time, by Laurie Colwin, published in 1978. I haven't been liking much of the fiction that I've read recently, so I figured I would read the first chapter and then skim the rest and give it back to Arthur; but it turns out I'm finding it pretty engaging so far.
I particularly liked the below-quoted bit (from pages 46 to 47 of the hardcover edition), though I'm not sure whether it works out of context. After an awkward quasi-date, Vincent kissed Misty and then fled; now he's invited her out to dinner to attempt to apologize, and the following conversation ensues:
“Did you actually drag me out to dinner to tell me that you didn't mean to kiss me?” She was still smiling.
“I'm sorry,” said Vincent. “I was just being conversational.”
“Conversational about kissing?” said Misty. “Very interesting.”
“What I meant to say is that I wanted to kiss you, but I didn't mean to.”
“Well, that certainly clears things up,” said Misty. “You and I seem to have very different ideas about intent and about kissing.”
“I mean, you can't just go around kissing people,” said Vincent.
“You did,” said Misty.