Info Gluttony

Mourning

Posted in Uncategorized by echan on April 14, 2007

This is a little tardy, but in my defense, my status message on the day of his death was “R.I.P. Kurt.” I am not only mourning the man, but that period of youth, somewhere between 15-23 where a writer can completely take hold of your mind. There are three novels that I’ve forced people to read: (1) 1984, (2) Slaughterhouse 5; and (3) the Secret History. This stage in life is so universal, that the NYT editorial devoted to Mr. Vonnegut perfectly summed up the feeling:

If you read Kurt Vonnegut when you were young — read all there was of him, book after book as fast as you could the way so many of us did — you probably set him aside long ago. That’s the way it goes with writers we love when we’re young. It’s almost as though their books absorbed some part of our DNA while we were reading them, and rereading them means revisiting a version of ourselves we may no longer remember or trust.

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5 Responses

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  1. ToastyKen said, on April 14, 2007 at 11:20 am

    That’s so true. I was totally obsessed with Isaac Asimov when I was a teenager, made my way through every single Robot-Galactic Empire-Foundation novel, tons of short stories, and even an autobiography… and then stopped reading him for years.

    I only recently picked up Foundation again and started re-reading it. It’s actually quite different from what I remembered, though I still enjoyed it. About to get started again on the rest of the trilogy.

    I think part of it is the fear that when I go back, it won’t be as good as I remembered, and I’ll feel like I’ve ruined a part of my youth that I look back on fondly.

  2. eflan said, on April 16, 2007 at 7:17 pm

    You’ve hijacked this thread for Isaac.

  3. adam said, on April 17, 2007 at 9:17 pm

    I love the secret history!

  4. Saheli said, on April 19, 2007 at 12:02 am

    I didn’t know you were a Secret History fan!!

    I actually have revisited Vonnegut, and found it profitable, especially Slaughter House Five.

  5. […] when they played the Thriller video, yesterday’s news had much less of an impact than say hearing about Kurt Vonnegut.  This is in spite of the fact that my speech at my grandmother’s wake included a funny […]


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