a creature driven and derided by vanity

I started to give Philip Roth another chance with The Counterlife and he burned me, again. Did this guy write any books that aren’t more than 90% about his own penis. Maybe I should try to get past page 5. obviously anything will suffer if you read it after rereading Dubliners but I mean, come on. the sexual anxiety of the gray-collar classes is I guess in play for writing about. Maybe I’m being a fascist. Probably being a fascist. I’m really getting ready to embrace my new position as the de facto leader of the secular apolitical neofeudalist minority, and i hope you will too. The first step is for everybody to get everybody caught up on their Jane Austen and then we can move on to calisthenics.
PHILIP ROTH UPDATE: As of page 19, it’s better, mostly because of the received idea of “moral credentials” but still not clear why I am reading it. Although i suppose no one is holding a gun to my head, at least not right now, or at least it’s not clear that it has anything to do with Philip Roth

Discussion topics:
Steve Earle: The Roy Oswalt of Country Music
As it turns out, doing anything other laying in bed 10 h0urs a day reading is probably unchristian, if you know what I mean.
Sherman Alexie: can I get some input?
Also, it’s over, do you understand me, this ends here
Today’s foods:
Two bowls of Life
One bowl of Quaker Oat Squares
Assorted handfuls of both kinds of cereal
One two slice(s) of pizza

7 thoughts on “a creature driven and derided by vanity”

  1. Filming your mushroom binge would not seem to be the smartest idea. I would guess that, from here on out, cops who see Caveh Zavedi hanging around the airport with, say, Devendra Banhart, might just know what he’s up to.

    Do you mean “the Roy Oswalt of country music” in a good way, or a bad way? How favorable can a comparison to any Astro really be?

  2. When I was in New York last summer, just down the street from the closet I shared with a fellow Trib softball enthusiast for $90/night, someone had dumped a garbage bag full of Roth paperbacks out onto the sidewalk. I would rate my experiences thusly: American Pastoral (Craig Biggio), Portnoy’s Complaint (Eric Davis), The Ghost Writer (Jack Armstrong).

  3. Jack Armstrong seems like the strongest recommendation there to me. Maybe that’s institutional bias. I keep being told that The Great American Novel is very good but I keep not being able to get it for various reasons, the latest being that a violent criminal has my library card. Somewhat related: Phil Garner appears to have had plastic surgery? Am I crazy? He looks like he had the Jerry Jones eye tuck.

    I mean Roy Oswalt in a mostly good way? I like both Roy Oswalt and Steve Earle despite both of them being importantly Texan in their professional career

  4. there is a line in confessions of felix krull where felix says something like some people shouldn’t talk, basically. maybe it’s less feudalism i want than just like old-fashioned athenian democracy wherein the qualifications for voting are so strict as disqualify almost anybody. but i don’t want to disqualify based on like gender or race, just on the ability to prove that you are not an asshole (reverse reverse: it’s actually much stricter than race or gender or height!) so, yeah, feudalism, what’s wrong with that. all i am saying is, neoliberal democracy sure seems like a wash, so maybe it’s time to spice things up, try something new, change of pace.

  5. Author: Roth, Philip.
    Title: The great American novel / Philip Roth.
    Edition: First edition.
    Imprint: New York : Holt, Rinehart and Winston, c1973.


    Circulation Status
    Location Call No. Copy/Vol. No. Status
    Regenstein, Stacks PS3535.O86G8 1973 c.1 Not checked out Add Copy to MyList
    Not on shelf?

  6. Alexie could beat up Philip Roth, and probably can still dunk. I’d avoid the novels, and stick with the short stories. I recommend, whatever that means.

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