Now, I know I can probably not convince anyone to read this book, but it... if there is some kind of commentary I've found to which I've lived, to which John has lived, or anyone who has had an alienatingly strange life, then this is the book that contains it, splattered into quotes. The plot is twisted by truth, lies, evasions and bizarre characters, but the quotes shine. I once proposed to do my final project for a class on this book and was refused, my teacher stating that it was "a terrible little book." I found a perfect first edition for only $6 in the shop of a man who knew what he was doing, so my teacher was not the only one who found it worthless. I am going to put up daily quotes from it. I spent a couple of days looking for another quote, which I shall also post as quote -2-. I see T. McGuane favours the comma where I favour the dash.

But I looked down through the spinning air filled with frangipani and rock and roll and saw how quickly you are alone, how that can be shown to you in an instant. I think for a long time that was my business to drive this into relief, that this was what I did for my time, poured blood from my head so that strangers could form a circle. The immaculate dream of touching and holding was shed and I stood, an integer, not touched; for nothing but power. I couldn't even name my dog. But there was something I wanted besides that; something as simple as to ache in the literal heart and chest for all of us who had lost ourselves as parents lose children, to the horizon which is finally only overtaken in remorse and death.
Here is the second quote. I had actually been thinking about it for some time, in the context of disappearance. The occupational hazard of disappearing, over the long haul, is that at some point you buy a ticket too. It was more than that. I've forgotten, but it was important. I'll let you know (inevitably) when it emerges again.

"There's something inside him nobody can face" I wanted to know what that was, though I suspected that my enormous evasions had culminated in some ghastly suck hole. Still, I had faced a lot. The occupational hazard of making a spectacle of yourself, over the long haul, is that at some point you buy a ticket too.


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