As over 4,000 hungry and doubtless pretty funky passengers and crew of Carnival Cruise Line (Yeah, the Costa Concordia was theirs, too) ship Triumph, who've been without ventilation, hot food, and working plumbing
[NYT link] since a fire broke out in the engine rooms last Sunday, near land (they hope) it's a good opportunity to re-read David Foster Wallace's classic piece on luxury cruises, "Shipping Out
"[.pdf] (also published as "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again.") And personally, I don't care if he may have made some of it up
posted by mojohand
on Feb 14, 2013 -
I find it almost impossible to finish cataloging. I spend days away from the fourth floor, ruminating over things I’ve read and unable to return to my place in the pages. I read things that really piss me off. I read things that frighten me. I read things that delight every bone in my body. When I’m working on it, I feel as though I’ve gone underwater. One day I forget to leave at five. The clock on the fourth floor has stopped at some point while I’ve been working. When I finally get up I find the elevator has been locked. Jenn Shapland is cataloging the archive
> for David Foster Wallace
's The Pale King
posted by chavenet
on Oct 18, 2012 -
An “Infinite Jest” atlas.
The Infinite Atlas Project is an independent research and art project seeking to identify, place and describe every possible location in David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest. The project includes: Infinite Map
- a cartographic infographic poster identifying 250 of the most interesting locations from the novel. Infinite Boston
-a ruminative travelogue and photographic tour of key locations in and around Boston, Massachusetts. [Previously]
posted by Fizz
on Sep 7, 2012 -
Apparently, David Foster Wallace's "Word Notes" from the Oxford American Writer's Thesaurus
show up in Mac OS X's native Dictionary app
. Well, they do if you still use Snow Leopard (OSX 10.6). If you have Lion or Mountain Lion, you can browse through them here: (PDF
). You can find more uncollected/unpublished DFW stuff (including pieces that will show up in the upcoming Flesh and Not Flesh
essay collection) here
posted by AceRock
on Sep 2, 2012 -
"Madeleine encounters Leonard in the lit crit seminar. He's a hulking, attractive guy who alternates between silence and bursts of intellectual virtuosity. He chews tobacco. He wears a bandanna. He's David Foster Wallace
." (via Slate) [more inside]
posted by GraceCathedral
on Oct 10, 2011 -
The Mistake on Page 1,032: On Translating Infinite Jest into German.
"'The limits of my language are the limits of my world,' Ulrich Blumenbach quotes Wittgenstein as saying in a Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
article to describe the challenges and inducements of the six years he spent translating David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest
) into German — something he did without input from the author, who refused to speak to him." [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco
on Mar 4, 2010 -
This, like many clichés, so lame and unexciting on the surface, actually expresses a great and terrible truth. It is not the least bit coincidental that adults who commit suicide with firearms almost always shoot themselves in: the head. They shoot the terrible master. And the truth is that most of these suicides are actually dead long before they pull the trigger.
And I submit that this is what the real, no bullshit value of your liberal arts education is supposed to be about: how to keep from going through your comfortable, prosperous, respectable adult life dead, unconscious, a slave to your head and to your natural default setting of being uniquely, completely, imperially alone day in and day out. That may sound like hyperbole, or abstract nonsense. Let's get concrete. The plain fact is that you graduating seniors do not yet have any clue what "day in day out" really means. There happen to be whole, large parts of adult American life that nobody talks about in commencement speeches. One such part involves boredom, routine, and petty frustration. The parents and older folks here will know all too well what I'm talking about.
First reported by an anonymous tip to a blog
, the Los Angeles Times
has confirmed that David Foster Wallace has hung himself.
posted by gerryblog
on Sep 13, 2008 -
Le Conversazioni: Last summer
a group of writers including David Foster Wallace, Zadie Smith, Jonathan Franzen, and Jeffrey Eugenides gathered on the Isle of Capri to discuss language and identity. This year's lineup
includes Ethan Coen, Martin Amis, Ian McEwan, Claire Messud, and Chuck Palahniuk.
posted by mattbucher
on May 31, 2007 -
It is difficult to describe how it feels to gaze at living human beings whom you’ve seen perform in hard-core porn. To shake the hand of a man whose precise erectile size, angle, and vasculature are known to you. That strange I-think-we’ve-met-before sensation one feels upon seeing any celebrity in the flesh is here both intensified and twisted. It feels intensely twisted to see reigning industry queen Jenna Jameson chilling out at the Vivid booth in Jordaches and a latex bustier and to know already that she has a tattoo of a sundered valentine with the tagline HEART BREAKER on her right buttock and a tiny hairless mole just left of her anus. To watch Peter North try to get a cigar lit and to have that sight backlit by memories of his artilleryesque ejaculations.
David Foster Wallace on the adult film industry
posted by PenguinBukkake
on Jun 27, 2006 -
Seeing The Matrix yesterday (and just before it, the preview for the third Terminator movie) reminded me of this old David Foster Wallace essay"F/X Porn"
, in which he points out how Hollywood blockbusters have become the equivalent of your average "2 for $10.99!!" XXX rentals. [Google cached version here.]
posted by slipperywhenwet
on Jun 13, 2003 -
A blistering dissection
of David Foster Wallace and Simon Winchester's previously published essays on English usage, by Mark Halpern. Though I like some of Wallace's writing, I admit it's nice to see the scalpel taken to Wallace's "style for style's sake".
posted by Big Fat Tycoon
on Oct 19, 2001 -
Talking the talk: An interview with John McWhorter
Speaking of linguistics and whatnot,
I've been thumbing through the new-look East Bay Express.
I read this, and I feel like McWhorter's
never gotten over some black people wrongly labeling him as an Oreo cookie (never had someone assure him, in response to epithets like those, that there are 35 million ways of being African-American -- and that many of them involve fluency in "totally ass-kicking SWE," to reference David Foster Wallace's essay on Bryan Garner's new usage book in Harper's
a couple of months ago).
I appreciate his iconoclasm (hell, like myself, he voted for Nader) and I'm willing to concede points of his basic argument and that I agree with him on some (the whole "niggardly" thing; the Ebonics controversy) points.
But after reading this, I wound up feeling irritated with him -- and especially put off by allowing himself to be
marketed as a conservative and, despite his vaunted speaking ability and academic credentials, his inability to get his points across in the media.
posted by allaboutgeorge
on Jul 6, 2001 -