Well, thanks to Avery’s insightful “it’s like an art gallery” post on Infinite Summer, my whole attitude to IJ has changed. I think I’d been expecting it to converge, and hadn’t quite understood why that wasn’t happening.
I read a great deal at a friend’s cottage in early August, sitting in the lake (and I do mean IN the lake – the water temperature was perfect) reading off my Palm Treo. Something about being outside made the book just really click for me. I’m only just past the August 10th spoiler line, but I am still committed to being done by the 21st of September. Doable? Tight, but yes. I’m determined.
Yesterday I hit the part about Toronto’s SkyDome and the “people doing adult-type things in the windows of the hotel” issue. I remember when that happened! I don’t think it was as frequent an occurrence as DFW suggests, but it did most definitely happen and there was the usual outrage. I loved seeing that and having the book tie into my own experiences like that.
And I absolutely adored the eschaton sections. I’m right now at the point where the boys and Ann Kittenplan are waiting to receive possible discipline over the mess it became, but I can’t stop thinking about the game itself. I let some of the technical details roll over me, since I’m not exactly going to be playing it myself, but seeing the interactions of the kids, and the way the game changed as tempers flared… so clear and so beautifully written.
Finally, I got stopped dead by the vision of the Moms holding her feelings out in front of her with a Glock to the feelings’ head daring people to hurt them. It still gives me the shudders. I get the Moms in a way I didn’t before just by that one image. There’ve been a few spots in IJ that made me jealous of the writing skill, and this is most definitely one of them.
I so hope I get to the end with everyone else. If not, though, I will be getting to the end regardless. I want to.
Great to hear from you, Heather, and I’m glad you’re enjoying the book a bit more now. Stay tuned for a big long end note that provides even more insight into the Moms (not sure if it’s happened by the August 10 milestone or not).
I didn’t realize how jealous I was of Wallace’s writing skill until I recently read his first published work, “The Planet Trillaphon…” (recently republished in Tin House) and realized how *not* developed a writer he was. That is, when I realized that he wasn’t *just* born with a gift–more that he developed it, which makes me more jealous, not less, because he actually *earned* every ounce of what he wrote about. Which might explain the sincerity behind it.