Thursday, March 27, 2014

Laugh of the Day

I am going to embarrass myself by admitting that prior to yesterday I had never read anything by David Foster Wallace. I had heard of him in passing, and had read of his sad end.

I read an essay by him last evening that I found in the forgettable and pointless book "MFA vs NYC". His essay was a garnet glowing on a slag heap.

Today I found his Harper's piece about his week spent on a luxury cruise ship. It is "Shipping Out" and can be easily found on a number of Internet sites. It is not short, and may prove to be too much for those who find Twitter too long winded and taxing, but I thought it the funniest thing I have read since Mark Twain wrote about Emmeline Grangerford.

Here is an excerpt in which Wallace describes his fellow passengers-

" I have heard upscale adult US citizens ask the ship's Guest Relations Desk whether snorkeling involves getting wet, whether the trap shooting will be held outside, whether the crew sleeps on board, and what time the Midnight Buffet is."

The rest of the essay is just as funny.

I hope to read his novel "Infinite Jest " sometime soon. If his fiction is as good as his essays it will be good indeed.

*There are some fascinating videos of Wallace's talks and interviews on Youtube. I am working my way through them now.

1 comment:

Sam said...

"How far can I see with these binoculars?"