Wednesday, 18 April 2012

On being Unique

Now I am not saying that that Margaret Mead  is not a worthily quotable person “ …you are unique, just like everybody else” but I do think that the  David Foster Wallace passage, below, is a more poetic take on the same. Clearly not a man for a sound bite. But I do like it. I think I might have to read him. Anyone familiar with his work?
 ‘‘We all have our little solipsistic delusions, ghastly intuitions of utter singularity: that we are the only one in the house who ever fills the ice-cube tray, who unloads the clean dishwasher, who occasionally pees in the shower, whose eyelid twitches on first dates; that only we take casualness terribly seriously; that only we fashion supplication into courtesy; that only we hear the whiny pathos in a dog’s yawn, the timeless sigh in the opening of the hermetically-sealed jar, the splattered laugh in the frying egg, the minor-D lament in the vacuum’s scream; that only we feel the panic at sunset the rookie kindergartner feels at his mother’s retreat…Solipsism binds us together...That we are, always, faces in a crowd’’ – from the story ‘‘Westward the Course of Empire Takes its Way’’, in the collection “The Girl with the Curious Hair” (1989).


1 comment:

frances said...

Sadly, DFW has the unique position (among those of us to whom you sent the link to your latest musings) of having died well before his time.