Thursday, January 1, 2009

The Jest: pages 389 - 440

Page 389 line 5: hagiography, biography of a saint or the saints; biography that treats its subject with undue reverence.

Page 389, 12 lines from bottom: “Fame is not the exit from any cage.” Another cage reference.

Page 388-389: Lamont Chu discovers the nature of truth; it can be a crushing disappointment.

Page 390 line 10: turpitude, extreme immorality or wickedness.

Page 390 line 10: C.F.D.C. = Caffeine Free Diet Cola. DFW loves him his acronyms.

Page 393 line 4: pruritis-cream containers = tubes of acne medication

Page 395 line 8: calotte, a skullcap, especially one worn by Roman Catholic priests. This word was used in the description of the I-day festivities, where everyone at E.T.A. is wearing some kind of hat.

Page 396 line 5: Hal’s issue with sugar; is something about his metabolism changing, with puberty, perhaps?

Page 396-397: “The Medusa v. The Odalisque”; a model or concept for The Entertainment? The Odalisque is described later as a purely Quebecois myth, so does this fictional film model the conflict between the U.S. and Quebec in this book?

Page 397-398: If the above is true, or possible, then “The Joke” could be a model or concept of the anti-Entertainment, the video that was supposed to be the cure for the effect of The Entertainment.

Page 399, 3 lines from bottom: The presidential declaration that established the Great Concavity.

Page 400 line 15: January 16th meeting of the Concavity cabinet. My birthday :-)

Page 400-401: All president Gentle can say is “Hhhaaahh Hhhuuuhh Hhhaaahh Hhhuuuhh”. Does he now have Hal’s problem?

Page 403 line 7: “Allow me to illustrate what Lur—just what the president means.” Rodney Tine, influencing president Gentle to give away the Great Concavity, was influenced by Luria Perec, his stenographer. See p. 92 line 23.

Page 403 line 15: The Great Concavity looks like a bite taken out of the old U.S.

Page 404, 5 lines from bottom: brillantined, (maybe intended brilliantined) hair oil, an oily hair cream, used by men to keep hair in place and make it look glossy.

Page 407, 7 lines from bottom: The story of Eric Clipperton and the the Clipperton legend.

Page 411 line 21: Hal, in the seventh grade, has memorized only up to “R” in the Oxford English Dictionary. Did he ever get beyond “R”? Why or why not?

Page 223: w.r.t. the names given to the subsidized years; some are obvious jokes (#6 in particular), but the first and the last might be significant. Maybe the last year (Year of Glad) was something to be glad about.

Page 410, last line at bottom, to page 411 line 1: Describing the effects of sugar (at least on Hal) as a kind of drug, at least sugar’s drug-like effect. See p. 396 line 5.

Page 412-413: The Viney and Veals ad campaign for cable TV, and the anti-ads for Nunhagen Aspirin, and how Viney and Veals almost single-handedly took down broadcast television.

Page 415, 13 lines from bottom: How InterLace Entertainment got started.

Page 417 line 12: Refer to pp. 144-151 for an explanation of how GTE and Sprint stock got so low.

Page 418 line 20: After reading of the success of Viney and Veals (p. 411-418), it starts to become clear how J. Gentle won the presidency.

Page 418, 7 lines from bottom: Marathe lost his legs to a U.S.A. train. But wasn’t La Culte du Prochain Train performed in Quebec?

Page 420 line 2: Steeply’s need to appear grotesque seems to oppose the purpose of U.H.I.D.

Page 420 line 19: Steeply’s description of terrorists, how there is always an agenda or purpose. Compare that to what the O.U.S. is doing to Steeply.

Page 421 line 28: A landing aircraft describes a spiral. Steeply’s tossed cigarette describes a spiral. Note that both spirals are descending.

Page 422 line 20: “…a caged rodent…” Another cage reference.

Page 422 line 9: These two, Marathe and Steeply, are discussing some deep philosophy while watching celebrating and merry-making down below them. (The celebrating and merry-making of a primitive sort, around a bonfire.) They are like gods on Mt. Olympus looking down on the world. I believe Shakespeare did this kind of scene as well, did he not?

Page 423 line 21: “A wife who doesn’t mistake your job’s requirements for your own fetishes.” Ref: p. 419, 12 lines from bottom. Steeply is just a full-on company man.

Page 429, 8 lines from bottom: mafficking, a boisterous and extravagant public celebration.

Page 431, 14 lines from bottom: cuirass, a protective covering, or a means of protection; a piece of body armor made of metal or leather, covering the chest and sometimes the back.

Page 438 line 18: orts, scraps or bits of food remaining after a meal is finished.

Page 440 line 9: A yawning red skull, also on p. 411, 10 lines from bottom; Mr. U. Ogilvie marked it on Hal's term paper.

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