David Foster Wallace
|This article is probably much too highbrow for your petit-bourgeois sense of humor (P.B.S.H). Don't expect vulgar cracking-ups or sophomoric non sequiturs.
Just sit down with your pipe and let a gleeful smile form in the unadulterated corner of your mouth (U.C.Y.M). If that still doesn't nudge your little gray cells into comprehending the sophisticated witticisms, go pick up a book, you dumbtard!
David Foster Wallace (D.F.W.) (born February 21, In The Year of the Carton-Size Dove Bar; Died September 12, In The Year of the 2007 Mimetic-Resolution-Cartridge-View-Motherboard-Easy-To-Install-EuroiPod For Infernatron/InterLace TP Systems For Home, Office, Or Mobile) is an eminent and critically lauded American novelist, essayist, pyromaniac, short story scrivener, and pedagogue.
Critically burnt as a toddler, his parents arranged him to grow long hair for the rest of his life, and as the burn had destroyed his intellect, installed a discreet installation of a Latin/Greek dictionary (L/G.D) in an unspecified niche of his skull; then changed his name from David Incandenza to David Foster Wallace. The native of New York lucubrated in Poonoma University, making a living out of kitten huffing performances. Suddenly he realized that he could breed long hair, act stylish and over-educated, then make a living out of cranking elongated articles ab absurdo.
He was once espoused with three dictionaries - Penguin English Dictionary (P.E.D.), Merriam Webster's (Third International Edition) (M.W.T.I.E), and Roget's Thesaurus, 1979 Edition (R.T.1979.E) - and had an array of hybrid infants, respectively named David, Foster, and Wallace.
At the age of 27, he had a lengthy affair with a "red, sleek and arousing" Oxford's Dictionary, Eleventh Edition, one which he called a "delectatio morosa". "The slightly rough, laminated covers and the discreet 250,000 definitions skyrocketed me into a sense of heightened euphoria," he once spoke in a press conference, "and upon the opening of her pages, brought me to an extreme specter of ecstasy." This eventually led to the divorce with his three dictionaries, whose legal battle for child custody became the most unimportant lawsuit since Alien vs. Predator.
He spoke of this experience in one of his most recognized works, Something Supposedly Fun That I'll Never, Never Do Again (Honeys, I Swear) is a 100-page about the lengthy affair. A condensed edition appeared in Hustler magazine, in a report of Ten Sexy Fetishes!. Wallace was not satisfied with this edition as Hustler had edited out 53 of his end notes, and famously declared his motto, "Footnote, ergo sum."
After this self-described "traumatic incident", he returned to "a deep sea of depression" and cranking out an auto-biographical Infinite Pest, a 500-page-long novel to "have a final say on my life". To the disappointment of many, that was not the end of his life and thus he returned to work on Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, where critics said is "Wallace in his most honest...and egotistical."
Finally weary of writing about his own life, he sunk into great lethargy, trying to have sex with chicks in some tennis academy, but only succeeded in having it with tennis balls, and lobsters, which were "his current object d'amour". His essay, Consider The Lobster, was about this relationship.
Sadly, when the lobsters "undermined my sex appeal", he started looked for a higher being. Then he found one. Fifty years later, he died happily in her arms. The end.
Wallace wrote in sesquipedalian, ostentatiously extended clauses, resulting in a pruriently and stubbornly tenacious prose style - providing a bottomless pit for the issue of brevity and the opinion of simplex sigillum veri. He also used many footnotes, and thus came to the uneducated proletariat as "clumsy and annoying", one of his criticisms. One work stands out of his repertoire, however: The Litle [sic] Dog and Superman , which is considered one of his most accessible and readable works and perhaps his magnum opus. Critics generally agree that the significant difference of style was because the work was written during third grade English class, when he had not yet been traumatized by pressure from the intellectual literati. It also has the Joycean quality of his later writings, due to the fact that he had not learned to punctuate.
His style is well-received and lauded by real critics This from London Review:
|“||More than anything, the defining quality of these fictions is the degree to which they leave the common reader totally bat shit confused about very basic narrative issues: what are those obscure Roman phrases? Sex with dictionaries? WTF? Why did I buy this fucking book?||”|
- The Buffoon of The System
- Infinite Pest 
- Brief Interviews with Loathsome Men 
- A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again (Honeys, I Swear)
- Oblivion: Stories
- A dire warning at that.
- Actually, this is not entirely true as I regularly juxtapose the highbrow with the lowbrow to produce my personal brand of post-modernism, which in fact makes me more highbrow and more capable of stuffing sentences to gain the abhorrence of tired printers.
- This is true as in my affection for Wildean tropes.
- Or perhaps dotish.
- I understand that the status quo believe that the name is almost a direct synonym for "that hipster guy that everybody knows at one time or another who pretends to read all these huge and smart books" but I imagine that it is possible to start with a simple nom de plume for this article. As I see it, starting with the name of the subject matter, emboldened in black, serves as a clear start of a great article. This method has had its origins in Dante's Inferno, which I read - and thoroughly enjoyed - at the age of two, laughing loudly at the various characters in Limbo, on my mother's lap. (I also have the complete works of Cicero.) This, I infer, proves that this lead should be correct. Perhaps many authors will follow suit.
- Also, to comment on my name: David, a Christian Biblical hero, داوود or داود in Arabic, the second king of the kingdom of Israel, also shares many important characteristics with me, such as leadership qualities and overall handsome appearance and features, according to the great wealth of books I have read. Foster is also the name to a large amount of American cities, such as Foster, Wisconsin and Foster, Indiana. Alfred Russel Wallace was also the co-founder of the so-called theory of evolution. These show, I recognize, the greatness I am destined to achieve and how remarkable this article is going to be. Perhaps this is a foreshadowing, a technique I have at great lengths discussed in my novel Finite Jest, written a bene placito communibus locis, or in actuality, Duae tabulae rasae in quibus nihil scriptum est. By the way, did I say I detested irony?
- A most unfortunate coincidence: In 1848, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels released the groundbreaking Communist Manifesto.
- In a way that adheres to Warhol's comments on "15 Seconds of Fame". It is perhaps because my good
hardcore porn pics of myselfarticles on magazines like Playboy and Gourmet which were only published as a bribe
- The emergence of something called Meta fiction in the American '60s was hailed by academic critics as a radical aesthetic, a whole new literary form, literature unshackled from the cultural cinctures of mimetic narrative and free to plunge into reflexivity and self-conscious meditations on aboutness. Radical it may have been, but thinking that postmodern Meta fiction evolved unconscious of prior changes in readerly taste is about as innocent as thinking that all those college students we saw on television protesting the Vietnam war were protesting only because they hated the Vietnam war (They may have hated the war, but they also wanted to be seen protesting on television. TV was where they'd seen the war, after all. Why wouldn't they go about hating it on the very medium that made their hate possible?) Meta-fictionists may have had aesthetic theories out the bazoo, but they were also sentient citizens of a community that was exchanging an old idea of itself as a nation of do-ers and be-ers for a new vision of the U.S.A. as an atomized mass of self-conscious watchers and appearers. (This footnote will probably be cancelled by other editors so I'll just say this.) For Meta fiction, in its ascendant and most important phases, was really nothing more than a single-order expansion of its own theoretical nemesis, Realism. If Realism called it like it saw it, Meta fiction simply called it as it saw itself seeing it. This high-cultural postmodern genre, in other words, was deeply informed by the emergence of television and the metastasis of self-conscious watching.
- On the state of the meta-novel: So how then have irony, irreverence, and rebellion come to be not liberating but enfeebling in the culture today’s avant-garde tried to write about? One clue is to be found in the fact that irony is still around, bigger than ever after thirty long years as the dominant mode of hip expression. It’s not a rhetorical mode that wears well. As [Lewis] Hyde puts it, "Irony has only emergency use. Carried over time, it is the voice of the trapped who have come to enjoy the cage." This is because irony, entertaining as it is, serves an almost exclusively negative function. It’s critical and destructive, a ground-clearing. Surely this is the way our postmodern fathers saw it. But irony is singularly unuseful when it comes to constructing anything to replace the hypocrisies it debunks. This is why Hyde seems right about persistent irony being tiresome. It is unmeaty. Even gifted ironists work best in sound bites. I find gifted ironists sort of wickedly funny to listen to at parties, but I always walk away feeling like I’ve had several radical surgical procedures. And as for actually driving cross-country with a gifted ironist, or sitting through a 300-page novel full of nothing but trendy sardonic exhaustion, one ends up feeling not only empty but somehow...oppressed.
- Editor's footnote: This section may be largely inaccurate as a portion of critics claim the subject involved has no life.
- Said of an argument that seeks to prove a statement's validity by pointing out the absurdity of an opponent's position (cf. appeal to ridicule) or that an assertion is false because of its absurdity. Not to be confused with a reductio ad absurdum, which is usually a valid logical argument.
- No relation to Price Elasticity of Demand.
- This is related to the phenomenon of the Prostitute Smile, a national pandemic in the service industry. You know this smile: the strenuous contraction of circumoral fascia with incomplete zygomatic involvement, the smile that doesn't quite reach the smiler's eyes and that signifies nothing more than a calculated attempt to advance the smiler's own interests by pretending to like the smilee. Why do employers and supervisors force professional service people to broadcast the Prostitute Smile? Am I the only consumer in whom high doses of such a smile produce despair? Who do they think is fooled by the Prostitute Smile (P.S.)? And yet the Prostitute Smile's absence now also causes despair. Anybody who has ever bought a chick from a Manhattan pimp, asked for something to scratch your dick at a Chicago P.O. or tried to obtain the virginity from a South Boston waitress knows well the soul-crushing effect of a service workers scowl, i.e. the humiliation and resentment of being denied the Prostitute Smile. And the Prostitute Smile has by now skewed even my resentment at the dreaded Professional Scowl: I walk away from the Manhattan tobacconist resenting not the counterman's character or absence of good will but his lack of professionalism in denying me the Smile. What a fucking mess.
- Excluding 42-page long footnotes, 135-page long end notes and 279-page long Additional End notes.
- Excluding ambitious 1616-page footnotes, said by many as a play on Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer, only three times more
- Editor's Note: This is largely inaccurate, as Wallace only interviewed one hideous man, namely a man named David Foster Wallace. Wallace, though, has claimed that the pluralized title is "a magnificent attack on irony".
- This style is in agreement to one of my influences, James Joyce
whom I plagiarize from, such as this phrase: riverrun, past Eve and Adam’s, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs.
- The notes are used to disrupt the linearity of the narrative, to reflect my perception of reality without jumbling the entire structure. I could eliminate them all and place them in the work in extenso, but then no one would read it as it would be too understandable, and therefore lose the exquisite quality of pretentiousness.
- Which shows, in fact, that the lumpenproletariat should not have any chance for literacy in case they destroy the beautiful language of my, or not my, English.
- Dismally, they are diminishing in this depraved world.
- This review is negative to represent the truism that obnoxious critics abhor me. Real critics
, like porn stars,are the opposite.
- 10-year Anniversary edition comes with foreword written by Yorrick.
- Later editions entitled: Extended Confessionals with Beautiful Women.
- Editor's Note: This may be misleading as Wallace is in no way "in Oblivion". However, Wallace has commented that the title is "a magnificent attack of irony".