Bookish Matters

The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.

—Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

Monday, September 26, 2011


You should be aware that I am going to be talking about David Foster Wallace, or at least quoting him, a good amount in the following posts. You see, right now I live in Wallacelandia. It is all David Foster Wallace all the time. I'm in a class dedicated to him, and everyone in the class is getting a little crazy-eyed. DFW is in our heads. Last night, for instance, while spending time with a gentleman friend. I couldn't stop thinking about DFW, and allusions to him kept slipping out. Imagine me grabbing a young man by the lapels and shouting, "Are you being sham-honest with me? Are you being sham-honest?!"

To give you an idea, here is one of the interviews from David Foster Wallace's Brief Interviews with Hideous Men.

B.I. #19 10-96
Newport OR

'Why? Why. Well, it's not just that you're beautiful. Even though you are. It's that you're so darn smart. There. That's why. Beautiful girls are a dime a dozen, but not—hey, let's face it, genuinely smart people are rare. Of either sex. You know that. I think for me, it's your smartness more than anything else.'
'Ha. That's possible, I suppose, from your point of view. I suppose it could be. Except think about it a minute: would that possibility have even occurred to a girl who wasn't so darn smart? Would a dumb girl have had the sense to suspect that?'
'So in a way you've proved my point. So you can believe I mean it and not dismiss it as just some kind of come-on. Right?'
'So c'mere.'

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