Sometimes the books lead the post, and sometimes your building sits right atop a Luke’s Lobster and the blogging spark ignites. Between us, it was probably a bit of both. Yet as I sit here on January 1st of a new year, I learned that lobsters must shed their skin in order to grow. Is there a stronger metaphor to tie in with the turn of the calendar year? Yet what resonated was discovering that the lobsters are left quite vulnerable as their shell develops, a feeling to which we can all relate. As someone who has never really bought into the hype of the ‘reset’ feeling to New Years, I do empathize with the feeling that this time of year can leave us feeling a bit exposed – questioning who we are, what we’ve accomplished in the prior year, and what our intentions are moving forward.
Now, I’m a lobster purist. I firmly believe that this delicacy is at its best with a pound of flesh (to quote my friend Shakespeare), a toasted roll, and a bit of lemon. My father would echo this sentiment, quickly dismissing the mayo, the bed of lettuce, and the other ‘stuff.’ These titles are fairly straightforward as well, but as you begin to gorge through their delectable pages, you’ll find important lessons bubbling underneath the surface. Okay, fine, that may not be the sake of Brian Smith’s middle grade novel, Officer Clawsome, about the crime-fighting crustacean. Yet Lobstah Gahden, a picture book by Alli Brydon and E.G. Keller, provides a hilarious PSA about sea pollution tinged with that New England accent. Sara Arnell’s There Will Be Lobster serves up the crustacean as a catalyst as she recalls working through her midlife crisis. And, of course, if you’re looking for the truest of moral reckonings, go seek David Foster Wallace’s Consider the Lobster article.