“I’m not a machine. I feel and believe. I have opinions. Some of them are interesting. I could, if you’d let me, talk and talk. Let’s talk about anything.”

July 6, 2009

INFINITE JEST – page 282

It turns out that I’m not the only one who’s decided to start reading this summer. In a bizarre coincidence, several thousand people worldwide have decided to do the very same thing, finally proving that I am a massively influential human being. For the task in hand, I have managed to print off some spiffy new book-marks. It’s been a pleasure to partake in such an event, and it’s encouraging to share the experience with so many diverse people.

Such distractions aside, the book is a joy, and defies that usual melancholy that comes with enjoying a book of normal size, only to feel it ended just as you were enjoying it. As it stands, I’m very nearly 300 pages in, and it seems like I’ve only just started. This isn’t just down to the size of the book (I’m about 30% through) but the writing, which is sooopoib.

As if the happenstance of starting this book at the same time as everyone at Infinite Summer wasn’t enough to get me all moist like a pubescent girl, it was also fun to be reading during Wimbledon, what with IJ’s tennis thread. I found it hard not to transpose events in the book with those on my TV screen, and I imagined Andy Murray winding down after his semi-final loss to Andy Roddick by discretely puffing away on a one-hitter, and Roger Federer compulsively squeezing a tennis ball while talking to Nike suits about his awesome jacket, which my girlfriend considers “inappropriate”.


“Maybe it’s so I don’t have to be a fuckin’ waffle waitress…”

May 26, 2009

Today I commence reading the biggest book I have ever attempted to read with my eyes. I mark the moment for prosperity here, chiefly so I can keep record of how long it will take me to meander through the 1,079 pages that consitute Infinite Jest, written by the late David Foster Wallace. I also hope that it makes me look well clever and shit.

 

To yoink a plaudit from Esquire, it “shows signs of being a genuine work of genius”.  To quote from the foreword, the book promises to make me “a better person”.  Really.  A better person. How could that give one anything but the most throbbing of book-boners? If, by the last sentence of it’s last page, my hair isn’t shinier, my cheekbones no more chiselled, and my cholesterol no lower, then I will have no option but to sue.

My brother, not known for his booksmarts (or, indeed, any smarts in particular) asked me to synopsise the book in five words. At first I scoffed at such a lofty aim, but who am I to deny the convenience of such crude reductiveness? So here it is, 1,079 pages in five words – addiction, child abuse, depression, tennis. Perhaps when I finish, several years from now and a better person, I will suggest five words of my own. I imagine I will still use tennis though, to lighten the mood if nothing else.

~~~

Music – Codes In The Clouds – Paper Canyon