JD’s gone, one more round, JD’s gone

January 28, 2010

Salinger died.  Just four books and fragments we know of. As Sontag said, the point’s not to keep writing books.  It’s to write a book that lasts.

I got split as a teen not by the Catcher but Franny & Zooey, all sure on breath and falling out of the world.  Now I think I’ll go back to it for the first time.  Maybe see how it hit me like a cue ball and warped my trajectory. Yeah, for me it’s that book.  I’m pretty sure without it I’d have spent my time in a lab coat rather than the unemployment line with a book to kill time.

No I won't read this on a screen Steve Jobs you phoney

Catcher came later– I’d never read a novel I liked before, much less one I had to track down everything he’d written. Thank God I didn’t fall for Louis L’Amour.  Or Balzac.

Now I get to reread F&Z to see not, as we say, “how it’s held up,” but how I’ve held up.  16-year-old me.  Him looking over my shoulder, anxious for the metaphysics, oblivious to the East Coast class consciousness I see now in the first paragraph.

My memory of it until now is one big chunk, all Franny on the couch.

This could take a while.  Maybe I should just track down Dariush Mehrjui’s Pari instead.  Thank God for Iranian groceries!

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