Today, O Semi-Constant Reader, I present to you my favorite moments from David Foster Wallace’s A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again.
I have a particular longstanding fear of things that spin independently inside a larger spin. (pg. 98)
I’m telling you. Personal and political fun merge somewhere just of east of Cleveland, for women. (pg. 101)
I think the world divides neatly into those who are excited by the managed induction of terror and those who are not. (pg. 132)
Authors are monkeys who are mean. (pg. 139)
Quentin Tarantino in interested in watching somebody’s ear getting cut off; David Lynch is interested in the ear. (pg. 166)
Characters are not themselves evil in Lynch movies – evil wears them. (pg. 166)
I am now 33 years old, and it feels like much time has passed and is passing faster and faster every day. Day to day I have to make all sorts of choices about what is good and important and fun, and then I have to live with the forfeiture of all the other options those choices foreclose. And I’m starting to see how as time gains momentum my choices will narrow and the foreclosures multiply exponentially until I arrive at some point on some branch of all life’s sumptuous branching complexity at which I am finally locked in and stuck on one path and time speeds me through stages of stasis and atrophy and decay until I go down for the third time, all struggle for naught, drowned by time. It is dreadful. (pg. 267)1
- Sometimes an author says something that you just never thought of before, such as the Lynch/ear thing. Other times an author puts into words some vague thought you’ve been struggling with for years and have never been able to articulate it, or at least articulate it succinctly.