Sunday, September 14, 2008

R.I.P. David Foster Wallace


1962-2008

An enduring afflatus to at least two staff members (of this site, not of--you know--the staff of the working general public or especially world entire), David Foster Wallace was found deceased today*--lifeless; that is, but not senseless or extinct, just at rest or--God forbid, to use the parlance of this rather dysphoric epoch--pushing up daisies (but why not roses [or tulips or gardenias*]?). The man, or man-child, to recall the Faulknerian* influences for which he can easily be accused of/revered for, what with the sentences that go on endlessly* and the semi-coherent screwball comedy disguised as myth disguised as S-C.S.C., known for a book that many have bought but few have read, including your faithful narrator, who has made it past the first few hundred pages but yet for so gotten lost in the footnotes but still recalled fondly the description of a toilet flush as "leonine"; a narrator who did happen to read the short stories and essays* that never ceased to defy convention as long as they were still proving it; that decried the insidious hand of irony while simultaneously feeding it; that assessed modern culture unflinchingly &, ultimately, warmly; that established a hopelessly anhedonic tone that could be mistaken for playful affection were one not too punctilious.

HE WILL BE MISSED.

1. By hanging, a self-death both melodramatic and orotund, intractable yet purposeful, violent yet saturnine.
2. gardenia thunbergia to the initiated.
3. Or more commonly, but--let's be honest--probably more superficially, Pynchon, what with the brobdingnagian, serpentine literary offerings that often arrive, ceremoniously, at a herculean shrug.
4. (But not forever. Quite the distinction.)
5. The best of which was perhaps "Roger Federer as Religious Experience" or the winkingly second-person "Forever Overhead" or maybe the titular entry in A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again--referred to hence as A.S.F.T.I.N.D.A.--or, more likely, that impenetrable grammar screed in Consider the Lobster that proved too insular and persnickety for even this lowly--albeit diligent and erudite--reader.

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