Blackout of street lights that the area had been suffering in the arly hours of the morning She had apparently tripped smashed her skull on a low brick wall and fallen presumably unconscious into the waterThe orange plastic cover is still a possessed object The narrator plans to be buried wearing it I am a DFW completist Recently I have been suffering an anxiety that I had in fact not completed his first book of short stories Girl with Curious Hair It was time to reread it and banish those anxieties In fact best of my memory I had cut out several years back mid stride of Lyndon Never mind why Who would want to ask I had with clear vidence of memory read the ntirety of Westward under a tree in my backyard upon a blanket mom made Raggedy Ann and Andy pattern which had once belonged to my younger sister and we usually recently used for packing material from childhood on a day of one hundred three degrees no humidity But between half a Lyndon and all of Westward What had I missed Some of it but not all of itUsing the Zehn Sternen Review System Z This collection Love, Again: The Wisdom of Unexpected Romance encompasses only ten texts but as usual DFW serves us A LOT of content Mostly he dissects society by finding narrative chiffres for media and pop culture and it s intense and wild and fascinating but unfortunately he also displays his most annoying tendencies by overwriting some material in the most show offy way imaginable Still when this guy is going strong he is simply mind blowing so I just cut him some slack by giving him 4 stars Two of the stories deal with a lifelong obsession of DFW Television Little Expressionless Animals introduces us to a traumatized woman whoxperiences an unusual winning streak on Jeopardy thus getting caught in the wheels of commercial television In My Appearance a TV actress appears as a guest on David Letterman and disturbs the host and her husband by breaking conventions when she tells her truthThe title giving story Girl With Curious Hair about a sociopathic Republican lawyer and the punk crowd he hangs out with has often been seen as a parody of Less Than Zero but thinking about DFW s role in the New Sincerity movement it read like a piece of social criticism for me showing the author s disgust for any form of nihilism and hedonism In Lyndon we meet a fictional aide and confidant of Lyndon B Johnson The scalating Vietnam War the decline of Johnson s health and the homosexual protagonist s suffering from AIDS converge in an unsettling narrative maelstrom Here and There as well as Say Never play with shifting perspectives when a couple talks about their relationship and a man causes an uproar in his family because of his adultery Luckily the Account Representative Knew CPR John Billy and Everything Is Green are and it pains me to say it crossing the line to being pretentious They play with narrative conventions to a degree that the story itself becomes almost irrelevant the main message seems to be hey I m smart but we the readers already knew that so there s not much to see here The last text in the book is the novella Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way and in order to really understand what is going on in the writing workshop this text revolves around you need to be familiar with Lost in the Funhouse Frankly I had to check Intertextuality in David Foster Wallace s Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way and John Barth s Lost in the Funhouse in order to realize that this text negotiates the relationship between postmodern and maximalist writing among other things So I m sure this is a great puzzle for the initiated but alas I haven t read Lost in The Funhouse so I lose All in all this is a fun collection with a lot to discover and in a way it is also an interesting study of DFW the man who was only 27 when this book was published The following came up in the comment thread of my review of Oblivion StoriesThe I think about it the I would recommend that people new to DFW start with his first short stories collection Girl with Curious Hair His first two books the novelhis college thesis paper The Broom of the System and the recently aforementioned short stories collection probably have a lower net level of run on sentences and a accessible style on the wholeStarting with Infinite Jest as I did probably helped make me view the rest of his corpus through Infinite Jest tinted glasses which was obviously a good thing for me since I loved it so much But for those who are apprehensive about beginning this way or beginning with Wallace at all for that matter I say pick up Girl with Curious Hair Although the final and mind blowingly brilliant story is the rather lengthy Westward The Course of Empire Takes Its Way which would typically be considered not to be stylistically accessible at all really It s both a barbed criticism of and heartfelt tribute to metafiction a hilarious uasi autobiographical look into his writing workshop days in graduate school and much much And at its heart as with all of his work is a sincere and motionally resonant portrait of what it means to be a homosapien in the 20th21st century and beyond Great stuff Expressionless Little Animals It s 1976 The sky is low and full of clouds The gray clouds are bulbous and wrinkled and shiny The sky looks cerebral Under the sky is a field in the wind A pale highway runs beside the field Lots of cars go by One of the cars stops by the side of the highway Two small children are brought out of the car by a young woman with a loose face A man at the wheel of the car stares straight ahead The children are silent and have very white skin The woman carries a groc My main response to reading Wallace is that I m not clever nough to read Wallace I go through long periods in his fiction not knowing what the hell is happening and what the narrator is narrating My second response is that Wallace wrote fiction with a universal appeal inscrutable at times but with a heart and a mind built by NASA Despite this despite his intention to strike a basic human chord his fiction is largely the domain of the hyper literate or folks like me straining to be hyper literate Wallace s intellect both attracts and repels potential readers for both good and bad reasonsThis collection is largely free from such anxieties however Stories like Little Expressionless Animals and My Appearance xplore Wallace s contempt for TV over higher art forms Lyndon and Girl With Curious Hair are hilarious satires on American success and wealth and Luckily the Account Representative Knew CPR and Everything is Green are shorter xamples of the infinite interpretability of his workThese selections demonstrate his flair for aggressive comedy intensely felt language xperimental forms and Pynchonesue wordplay Sadly there are stories that demonstrate the less appealing facet of his work namely the almost pathological indulgence Wallace arrived on the scene when postmoderism was in its death throes yet became a compulsive reader of these texts Pynchon Barth t al His work to me does partly belong to a postmodern tradition filtered through a ironic lens Barth t al His work to me does partly belong to a postmodern tradition filtered through a ironic lens knowingly beyond such a pass form though still besotted Like how I feel about Michelle Obama I know she is a useless presence in my life though I still crave her uxorious attentions in the oval office despite loving my current spouse Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way is something I should have loved I respect metafiction and have a higher tolerance for its xhaustion than most But this was sheer xhaustive indulgence some incomprehensible homage to John Barth with cringe inducing self comment and showboating grandilouence than four Joyces It reads like the kind of fiction Wallace himself would later lampoon the dry academic work from campus writers albeit stamped with wit ideas and general impressiveness Metafiction about metafiction is really a niche genre John Billy Here and There and Say Never were inscrutable to me but this was only
my first reading If there s one thing Wallace demands it s than one reading BEGINNING OF AN first reading If there s one thing Wallace demands it s than one reading BEGINNING OF AN saw him many times around here since I joined the GR Club Sometimes having tete a tete with one of my friends and sometimes being the cynosure of some group discussions I thought of approaching him on many occasions but I didn t want to come up as somewhat forward and I wasn t ven sure if he was my TYPES Then a new year party invite brought us face to face with ach otherDavid Hi How you doinMe thinking about what should be an appropriate reply in correct EnglishOh Hell Hello I m doin goodHow are youDavid Well I m sentient today straight faceMe GapingDavid Ha Got yaMe mbarrassing giggleDavid Anyways did you get my proposal Me As a matter of fact I did but I m still contemplating didn t want to reveal that I ve already acceptedDavid Contemplating WhyMe You see it s a long term commitment and there are many things I need to be sure about like compatibility and I don t ven know anything about you yet and at the nd I don t wanna make a fool of myselfDavid Woah you re one of those over thinkers I reckon Well we still have plenty of time to know ach other You see that Girl with curious Hair over there go to her and talk May be she ll give you some overview about ummmy personality And for now have this sparkling WaterMe I looked back at that Girl while drinking that water but when I turned around he was goneWhoosh Starting of something magical was it THE DILEMMA OF STAR RATINGSMy first Wallace outing The reason of choosing this book Well I was intrigued by the title and read somewhere it s one of his most accessible works Accessible My Pretty Foot If you call a book of approx 400 pages that made me read 200 other pages just to know what the hell the stories are all about then I guess I need to raise MY standards and re define the word Accessible but no regrets I just wanted to share my bittersweet ordealIt won t be fair on my part to give stars to this book on a whole There are 10 different stories written in distinct styles some of which went well with me and some not so well So I ll give stars to ach of them separately Though I m not sure whether I ualify to judge these stories based upon its content as many themes were alien to me so the star ratings are largely based upon David s writing and of course my humble comprehensionincomprehension of themLittle Expressionless animals 5 StarsMy Favorite of the lot a uirky take on TV Game shows on the surface or Media industry in general the very 1st thought that struck me was Confession of a Dangerous Mind and I was than happy to be familiar with a common factor between the story and the movie ie The Game Show and its various facets But here the main story lies behind the scenes and in flashbacks about people associated in creating the show and their dealing with ach other motional turmoil From "The Very First Page "very first page job of a reader begins of putting the narrative in a proper seuence or simply stablishing connections in order to understand what is going on As stated in a blog David shows it to be the outcome of a complex network of interpersonal relations and motions Indeed it is Written in an incisive and damning parody of minimalist style of 1980s with an air of cold objectivity a poignant view which implies that the flashy life of ntertainment industry can be uite dismal or simply complicated. Aphic vocations of historical figures like Lyndon Johnson and overtelevised game show hosts and late night comedians to the title story where termi. David Foster Wallace turns the short story upside down and inside out making the adjectives inventive uniue and original seem blas TC BoyleTC Boyle turns the buddy blurb into an art form making the adjectives hyperbolic obseuious and pompous ass seem pass Further dude looks like a tip dipped in iodine Arthur Graham I don t know what happened but I m pretty sure I was supposed to like this way than I didWhile there were definitely some solid stories here and there were nough gems of description and dialogue to keep me reading on for large swaths of this book were decidedly underwhelming in my humble stimation It wasn t the author s convoluted narrative his deliberate obfuscation or his penchant for rudition that would be the pot calling the kettle black in this case Maybe I m just of a Pynchon man I ve seen the two compared before but I found this to be fairly dry humorless and not at all sexy by contrast From what I ve read of Infinite Jest it s clear to see that Wallace got better with age and here we find the seeds of that burgeoning brilliance sown amidst a great big pile of shitMaybe it was the title that turned me off I swear to god if one of you fuckers decides to title a book The Girl With Fill in the Blank The Fill in the Blank Thief or What We Talk About When We Talk About Fill in the Blank I m gonna punch a fetal panda bear in the snout Difficult brilliant jarring funny ironically arnest and arnestly ironic with the limpidity of apostasy and the remote functionality of an gg white toaster I just wanted to grab myself by the front of my shirt and pull myself into this dizzyingly dexterous series of fictional contortions wending through the labyrinth of self aware polymathic intelligence and meta situations to find the author standing apart from creations that the reader assists in imbuing with life with the melancholy pose of a parent whose children have fled the nest in order to stride up to him hold his shaggy sweaty head with both hands and implant a fond kiss upon his forehead whilst murmuring with the utmost sincerity Thanks for these buddy Guy With Furious Hair or The Toga Party Little of this life has been spent considering deathPaternal grandparents never known died as words on the page of a letter received long after the vent maternal grandparents took their leave in hospital Grandfather of mphysema when his grandchild was barely a teenager with no interest in a crabby and decaying invalid Grandmother years later of organ failure and senility surrounded by those of the family that were bothered to make the trek to her bedside Spurred on by a sense of belated filial obligation an unusually helpful secretary was reuested to arrange a flight but the demands of the then corporate schedule made no impact on Grandmother she failed to wait for her grandchild s appearance before giving up the ghostParents lingered long past their statistically valid xpiry dates but refused to be a burden on their offspring A Certain Justice (Adam Dalgliesh, electing instead toke out their final moments together in a well appointed institution and passing The Shadow Reader each within days of the other intoternal slumberThus has death made a muted impression and only with its approach can the recollection of the one time it had attempted a vocal digression of sorts occurIt was the beginning of second year at University the night of the orientation week Toga Party a ritual Cinderella Unmasked (Fairytale Fantasies event known for raucous and drunken brawling trawling andventual pawing some of it culminating in goring some of it in scoring almost all of it in snoring Linen when not rubber sheathed throngs stumbling sometimes linked in song sometimes linked by beverage through the shadowed spaces between the silhouettes of the Great Hall and the uadrangle the Arts building and the Natural History block Human Movements and Agricultural Sciences Floodlights bathing the oval and stadium with a savage intensity rendering the outlines of the drinking tents crisp and coloured revealing all the subterfuge
AND SABOTAGE IN WHICH TEAMS WHOSE sabotage in which teams whose are a mystery of the University s history ach with their own coterie of cacophonous condoners compete in the chariot relay races being held at midnight The losing team dumped in the river surrounding the peninsula on which the campus is sited the winners drenched in cheap champagne and beer and hoisted on shoulders to be paraded around the stadium carrying the Horse of Triumph a grotesue uine The Power Of A Choice effigy stabled in the bowels of the Student Union offices during the year and led out for the dubious honour of this annual spectacleVia the lack of virtue beueathed by impoverished school grades a place in an Economics degree the poor relation to Business Information Systems and Accounting has been secured as well as one within anually uninspiring uartet of students whose idea of radical consists of breaking with the time honoured tradition of smoking marijuana behind the Rowing Club on Friday afternoons and instead lighting up on a
THURSDAY THEREBY EARNING THE IRE OFthereby arning the ire of Rowing Club coach and a promise to haul us before our Dean Arrest for smoking on University grounds unless by Federal Police is impossible but deprivation of degrees is not Amidst profuse Apology And Crimson Cheeked and crimson cheeked we will slink away from the knowing stares of the team whose abundance of muscles mock us for the absence of ours The sport of sculling will ventually be acuired and uit when told that bull sharks inhabit the river since time is spent as much struggling back onto the craft as sitting on it and propelling it forwardsFriday nights are spent on two dollar drinks moaning the missed opportunities of making it with someone anyone although no one spends attention on us in such uantities as to suggest the xistence of opportunity missed or otherwise and Saturday nights most often involve sneaking into parties gate crashing for the uninitiated or watching Hey Hey It s Saturday and rented movies or playing Trivial Pursuit while drinking whichever brand of beer is discounted on any given weekend Sundays being nlivened only by fashionable threats to commit suicide because an assignment has missed its due by deadlineSuch was the being of an Economics studentBut away with this digression To return to the night of the Toga Party we are imbibing and ingesting and The Case for Paleolibertarianism and Realignment on the Right embellishing andffecting no change in our status uos wandering the Oh My God, What a Complete Aisling ever less crowded campus grounds for some time after the finish of the chariot races until stumbling on the realisation thatxcitement in whatever form it might occur must be manufactured by us Shelley owner of a five wheeled collection of moving parts one wheel uite often functioning as the means to navigate and which we have christened predictably Mover since its number plate initials are MVR is legally over the blood alcohol limit but less so than Martin Guy or the narrator and has suggested we hit the nightclubs in town since at this hour we are able to negotiate the cover charge down to the purchasing power of paupers After much time and group think we have puzzled out where Mover is parked by the ferry pier at the far Monsieur Pain end of the University grounds and weaved our way there Guy wants to urinate onach of the jacaranda trees passing us bye claiming these are the only territory he ver has the chance to markWe have progressed as far as the top of the main University drive where a huge round about signifies the ntrance to the University proper when the daring compulsion to protest our down trodden status both as students and sex symbols rears its seductive head Stop the car Shell Eh Slowing at the round about and frowning Whaffor Jus drive the car over t the metal box there Shell suinting in the direction indicated and starting to move off along the opposite and perfectly legitimate route Shell jus cut through G over there Pointing along the two lanes of non xistent oncoming traffic Look there s no one round No one s gonna see us Park the car at the box Scanning ach of the spiral arms of the round about No headlights wobbling between parked cars no toga swaddled singles or couples staggering towards us The only constant in the scene not being the street lamp on the corner fluorescing spasmodically Shell stalling the car before swerving across the lanes and bumping the gutter beside the box Supa Gimme a minute Half fall stepping from the car to contemplate the box less than the length of the car head height and the width of an xtended arm All the times having passed it never noticing the suat rectangle of metal sheeting resembling an abandoned filing cabinet having no idea what purpose it serves other than suiting mine admirably now On its horizontal upper two inverted plastic covers like outsize Alice teacups with conveniently located handles are screwed into rubber lined grooves Grasping one and twisting hearing a sudden pop as something housed within is snapped Marty Turning back to the car He is snoring and the cup is tossed onto his lap before concentrating on the remaining piece of the prize Resistance until with a sharp crack it is bisectedFeeling terribly confused because bright orange has dimmed to two pieces of colourless plastic Fuggryinoutfugginloud What the fuck Guy opening the front passenger door and waving furiously Was that you Didja jus kill the street lights Dunno The unexpected darkness descending sending arms and legs scrambling back into the car clutching the broken halves adrenaline rush filling A first act of vandalism in the name of the underdog has produced spectacular results Dja reckon so Let s drive round n see ow many lights ya buggered The car is hopping kangaroo for a few metres until conceding defeat and gliding forwards smoothly accompanied by the occasional protest in the form of a back fire Swinging left at the football field into a street shrouded in darkness until reaching the next junction where light falls on footpath shrubs and parked cars a couple leaning against a four wheel drive and imitating ravenous pythons and we have spun around in a creaking circle and are heading back the way we have come crossing the main drive into the short length of road that is cul de sacced at the river bank Zigging zag across the main arterial street all the way to its nd where it joins the road that leads to the city a distance of about two kilometres until we have ascertained the length and breadth of the street light blackout Holy fuck Guy punching my shoulder grinning Whadja do that for Dunno We never do anything Just seemed like a cool idea And look The plastic Mad Hatter teacup from Martin s lap fits the head perfectly We ve gotta mascot for Mover Shelley has driven us back to the house shared with a student couple he an Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts. engineer she studying arts and Mover is parked on the street Martin left within to sleep off the alcohol For the remainder of the night we will be playing cards and trying to sober up on cask wine until not long before sunrise when we will have stupor succumbed on bean bags and dank carpetThe following week the Student Union will have announced the decision that the annual Toga Party is no longer to be held on campus owing to violent behaviour claims of sexual harassment and the death of a student found lying face down in a puddle of rainwater along one of the side streets that deadnded above the river The time of her death had occurred during the. Girl with Curious Hair is replete with David Foster Wallace's remarkable and unsettling reimaginations of reality From the erily real almost hologr. .
Free read Girl with Curious Hair.
When the cameras are off Luckily the Account Representative Knew CPR 4 StarsA title uite revelatory of the story it s an xcellent xample of conveying something significant in few words It suggests as to how two unlikely people can meet in the most unlikely circumstances and share an xperience that might bind them together for the rest of their livesGirl with curious hair 4 StarsThis story was a 2 or 3 stars for me until I reached its Glitter Bomb (A Scrapbooking Mystery, end A young Republican met A group of crazy Punks and attended a party together The content baffled me not because it has generous use of drugs fellatio incest or a sociopathic instances I m lying they did baffle me but it was its ambiguousnding or rather the incompleteness of the story that made it interesting for me It s something like a Rorschach test for readerstell me what you see Tell me what you thinkLyndon 3 StarsThis particular story was too American for me so my judgment is purely based upon whatever little I could understand of the story Some insightful discussion with a GR friend gave me a better perspective about the possible implications of this piece Though not very Il morto di Maigret enjoyable for me because of its Political content I liked the treatment given to the characters and how subtly the relationship of two main characters unfolded during the whole process Ispecially liked its nding again containing many lines to be read in betweenJohn Billy 2 Star At this point I m regretting a little about the separate star rating but what the hell I didn t get this story at all The humor is of little consolation Few things I understood concerns the language used by Wallace here It s somehow consists of generous use of a particular vernacular vident mainly in the use of bad grammar The possible inspiration is McCarthy and Faulkner in this kind of writing From a blog In an interview somewhere Wallace said he didn t know how McCarthy gets away with it and that s the part of McCarthy s project that Wallace focuses on here how to make the anachronistical and anarchic mythical biblical dirt poor ungrammatical spoken language workHere and There 35 StarsA difficult story hard to comprehend but can be understood once you get the gist of the basic theme and who all are involved in dialogues with ach other It s mainly about human relations and nature of peculiar motions one could carry and how hard it can become for a person to be just Normal It can be difficult to identify with the narrator because it gets awkward at times and one could feel the urge to shout at him get over it Dude but that could possibly be the main message of this story that some of the simple things in life are the hardest to achieve My Appearance 5 starsThis is again one of my favorites and again with the backdrop of the Globalization: A Multi-Dimensional System, Third Edition entertainmentmedia industry this time with a Talk show Though it s a known fact that an actor on screen is an actor for lifetime in the publicye still there are instances which can make them uestion about their Appearance the relations in their lives and fidelity of loneliness that seems to be their constant companion and Wallace has captured those Billionaires Contract Engagement (Kings of the Boardroom emotions beautifully in this piece Say Never 1 StarThings happen People make mistakes don t vouch for anythingNever Say Never That s it I didn t get much out of this story my least favoriteEverything is Green 4 StarsA two page story and we witness a different Wallace here Revealing about it would mean mentioning spoilers so I m refraining from that It s not a very likeable piece on the surface again because of its minimalistic approach but can be interpreted in various ways taking cues from other sourcesWestward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way 45 StarsThe final story novella longest of all and this one alone took me around 15 days to dissect and study it It s basically David Foster Wallace Lost in the funhouse having Happy Meals UmmNo At this point the reviewer thought of pulling off a John Barth but soon realized her incapability to do soI had a hard time to understand as to whether it s a homage or a parody or a corrective or a self conscious act of Patricide to John Barth s Lost in the funhouse but nevertheless Injoyed it A preface to his celebrated Infinite Jest it was defined as an ngaging piece of Pretentious Juvenilia and I couldn t agree I mean how much a brain in its mid 20s t agree I mean how much a brain in its mid 20s possibly store but Wallace seemed to be well aware
of his intelligence and knew how to usehis intelligence and knew how to use I felt both intimidated and fascinated by his writing in this particular piece The idea influenced from Barth here is to perpetually interrupting the story to xplain techniues a writer generally mploys in his narratives Those interruptions are the high points of this story for me They presented a critiue view of Wallace s own writing as vident in the following text to write something that stabs you in the heart That pierces you makes you think you re going to die Maybe it s called metalife Or metafiction Or realism Or gfhrytytuIt has some hilarious moments witty statements and words like diphthongulated Again it s not an asy read and reuired the most ffort of all to get through it but it s worth the ride to have a glimpse of a Beautiful Mind of David Foster WallaceA HAPPY ENDINGEvery relationship needs some work and I m than happy with my first intro into the world of DFW Am I sounding corny Kindly bear with me coz may be I m in love ACNOWLEDGEMENTS1 I would like to thank Sven for his support and answering my ndless ueries in great detail and also stablishing the fact that I m not that stupid as much I felt after reading this book by stating the following YEAH My mind burst at that point Yeah I totally didn t Purely Sexual expect thatnding or uite understand it The West Transformed: A History of Western Civilization, Vol 1, to 1715 either Yeah I really have no idea what was going on in that one So thanks 2 Various blogs available on net3 And some clear and great analysis given in Understanding David Foster Wallace After finishing David Foster Wallace s Girl With Curious Hair I had to step back awhile before reviewing in fear I would simply come across as an overzealous cheerleader yelling Give me a DGive me a FGive me a W Like a teenage romance I was so blinded by my love for this collection and author that I wasn t surexactly what it was I loved so much and if this brightly burning passion was distracting me from the flaws and faults that I wouldn t realize were there until much later After giving some time to reflect my overzealousness has hardly died down and through some helpful and insightful discussions and rereads of the stories with others I highly recommend reading Garima s wonderfully comprehensive review I have not only been able to pinpoint my feelings on the book but my appreciation has only continued to grow The stories in this collection while ach varying dramatically at times in terms of style and voice all seem to reflect upon the psychological implications of xisting in the modern ra of media and social pressures Girl is an xcellent introduction into the works of DFW offering an xciting page turning look at a wide variety of his chameleon like styles and an introductory look into themes he would toy with and xpand upon for the whole of his stunning career Written in his mid 20s Wallace already demonstrates a piercing intellect coupled with a seemingly ffortless and strikingly versatile writing ability What finally convinced me to read DFW who almost instantly rose through the ranks of favorite authors was a small discussion on him in James Wood s How Fiction Works Although the Wood was using the story Mister Suishy from DFW s later short story collection Oblivion Wood discusses how Wallace as well as Pynchon and DeLillo are ready and willing to become to impersonate what he describes ven when the subject itself is debased vulgar boring This ability is made most apparent in the title story where Wallace narrates from the poetically void perspective of an The Anathema Cell extremely narcissistic and arguably sociopathic young republican attorney Other goodxamples is the way he allows the society of his characters to control the narration and most noticeably the syntax of other stories as well such as John Billy and Everything is Green There are also several stories included whose characters and story allow for of his own personal voice making room for literary discussions and terminology in Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way and as in Here a discussion on the blending of mathematics and poetry Wallace as shown in this useful wiki article majored in both English and Philosophy focusing on modal logic and mathematicsA major theme through the course of Wallace s work was his dissection of media and ntertainment Here the reader can see Wallace s arly musings on the subject Pookie-Pie examining popularntertainment in stories such as Little Expressionless Animals which alone is worth the price of the book and It is interesting to see how the implications of these stories have only become poignant with age My Appearance a story discussing the way late 80s ntertainment such as David Letterman made money ridiculing the xact things that have put him in a position to make money ridiculing things takes on a whole new meaning seeing it from todays standards where Letterman s ridiculing and humor is rather benign compared to much of the other insensitive and cutting media satires on television DFW Calling Home explores the way society has come to tear down anything and anyone that takes itself seriously and the only defense is to be self ridiculing and laugh at oneself He argues that nobody really wants to see someone succeed they want to see someone rise to the top merely to tear and claw at them as they fall from great heights and feast on their corpse They don t want someone to talk about how great and serious they are but only to mock the very things they take serious In this story we seearly xamples of using the joke to manipulate the very same audience that parodies had made fun of them for manipulating that were thematically crucial to his later masterpiece Infinite Jest While xploring ntertainment Wallace is able to create a highly ntertaining work as well The method of which he delivers his stories takes on an almost Hollywood approach when reflecting back on the final passage of the title story a scene spiraling out of control narrated as if all of the action is occurring in slow motion it rises in the mind as if it were a film I had viewed instead if a story I had read He manages to construct such a vivid image through spatial diagramming the scene with his descriptions and flawlessly illustrating the flow of motion The scenes of Little Expressionless Animals are cut up and rearranged like a Tarantino film allowing for an The Structure of Soviet History: Essays and Documents emotional impact through the descriptions of a scene to occur beforexamining and xplaining the motional and psychological significance later on It keeps the reader turning pages seeking out the piece of the puzzle that once fit to the rest brings the whole picture into focus At times Wallace does tend to serve up a characters backstory to xplain why they are the way they are in one big unsubtle scoop but this scoop is served on a golden platter of intellect as a side to the delicious story that it is hardly worth criticizing him over The most blatant xample is in the story Girl With Curious Hair when the sexual deviance of the narrator and the fiery conseue. Nal punk nihilism meets Young Republicanism Wallace renders the incredible comprehensible the bizarre normal the absurd hilarious the familiar stran.