Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Notes from The Jest: pages 79 - 86

Page 79 line 26: Lebensgefährtins: Seems like this term would be sort of like “little farts”, if not in German or some Germanic language, then in some phonetic imitation of German.

Page 79 5 lines from bottom: leptosomatic, same as ectomorphic.

Page 80 line 6: post-prandial, after a meal.

Page 80 line 7: quincunx, an arrangement of five things in a square, with on at each corner and one in the middle.

Page 80 line 16: bradykinetic, slow moving.

Page 80 line 25: varicocele, swollen veins in scrotum.

Page 81 line13: tympana, plural of tympanum, an architectural recess, especially between the top of a door or window and the arch above it, or between the cornices forming a classical triangular gable pediment.

Page 81 line14: aphoristic, like a succinct statement expressing an opinion or general truth.

Page 82 line 5: simpatico, sharing similar temperaments or interests.

Page 82 line 8: Extra-Linear Dynamics; near as I can tell, DFW made all of this up.

Page 82 line 12: prolix, again (see p. 61) tiresomely wordy.

Page 82 line 15: aleatory, depending on chance or contingency, having the sequence of given notes or passages in a piece of music chosen at random by the performer or left to chance.

Page 83 line 3: palestra, a public sports ground or gymnasium in ancient Greece.

Page 83 line 8: experialist, DFW obviously made this word up (which he’s entitled to do, being the author), but now it’s up to the reader to figure out what he means by it. I suspect it means the opposite of imperialist, (i.e. empire-building, the policy of extending the rule or influence of a country over other countries or colonies) in that a country gives up its territory, influence, or rule over other countries.

Page 83 line 15: “Except why do you let DeLint tie Pemulis and Shaw’s shoes to the lines, if the lines aren’t boundaries?” Is this statement intended figuratively or literally, considering that it is Mario making it? My choice is figuratively. And if Mario said this (as it seems he did, following the conversation between him and Schtitt), then not a bad observation from the slow-thinking boy.

Page 83, 12 lines from bottom: Mario, who is young and moves like an old man, next to Schtitt, who is old but athletic (see p. 80).

Page 84 line 16: (2nd paragraph) refer back to p. 42 and Hal’s discourse about a flag at half-mast.

Page 86 line 1: The reference to “pisscatchers” I’ve been looking for. “Happy Slippers”, slippers of green foam-rubber with smiley-faces embossed on the tops. In my first reading, I really pictured the footwear called “Crocs”, but I guess The Jest was published before they became popular, and Crocs aren’t made of foam rubber, either.

Page 86 line 9: skallycap, a scally cap, or flat cap (q.v. Wikipedia) commonly worn by and associated with Irish immigrants.

No comments: