Orion Reads
a diary of books etc.

Monday, November 03, 2008


re DFW.
it's ironic:
i was having a rough few days and had been feeling poopy for a while and was pondering ways to de-poopify my outlook on things, and i said to myself "maybe i should re-read IJ again. that always cheers me up." and it's true: without fail sitting down to read a page or twenty in IJ has never failed to make me feel like a slightly snazzier person. as if i were granted a temporary gift of some small part of DFW's wit and outlook. the additional irony here is that i was considering this rereading that very thursday just before his death. that evening i was out on the town and both myle and kevin texted me late in the night with the bad news.
one is reminded a bit of Richard Corey, of course. it's eerie and intimidating that someone as smart and definitively successful as DFW could eradicate his own map, as he might say. especially in view of the obvious wealth of knowledge DFW had around depression itself. (If you don't know, IJ deals with many many topics, among them is Depression with a capital D, and its treatment of it is highly informed and insightful) and of course one is also reminded of the constant theme in IJ about the danger and stress of achieving success, of making the cover of Tennis Annual or whatever, of creating one's opus. In many passages the entire raison of the enfield tennis academy is to prepare players to survive their own success in "the show". Haunting and intimidating.

Well, i have more to say but don't really feel like saying it here.

rest in peace, david.

here are the unknown words from that third reading.
many, many more than from the second, curiously.
my rules were: "words which i either don't know at all or i'm not confident enough with to deploy them in a sentence. excluding medical terms and other jargon."
i think this last time around i was more honest about the second part: it wasn't sufficient for a word to merely be familiar: if i would be scared to use it in conversation, then it went in the list. i think also i was more patient and dilligent about actually writing words down.
click to enlarge
also there were six additional words i ran out of room to write in the back cover so they're in the front, unphotographed:
p. 952 tucking ("billow and pop like a tucking sail")
p. 952 seraglio
p. 953 kyphotic
p. 965 piaffer
p. 967 Carmelite
p. 969 practicum


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