The Infinite Jest Deathmarch, Stage 15

'I remember something about he seemed to believe the name of the character Burns also somehow hiddenly signified the English verb for the promise of the consuming fire of the apocalypse.'

Begin: Page 651 (“Apparently some higher-up had sent Mary Esther Thode out on her little yellow Vespa…”)
End: Page 701 (“…the cartridge’s 50-point title is still trickling redly over the credits and frozen scene.”)

Start Date: 1/15/11
Finish Date: 1/21/11

Note Profile: 22 notes (265–286); #269 is a bear at 5 1/2 pages, but otherwise painless.

I feel like we are finally rounding the corner into the home stretch, we hardy band of few who are still standing. In the meantime it’s way too nice of a day in Oakland to be sitting here in front of the computer.

Also: Frank Burns eats worms.

The Infinite Jest Deathmarch, Stage 14

'I miss Jeannie, Samantha, Sam and Diane, Gilligan, Hawkeye, Hazel, Jed...'

Begin: Page 601 (“As at all D.S.A.S.-certified halfway facilities, Ennet House’s resident curfew is 2330h.”)
End: Page 651 (“Day says: ‘There is no way it could feel worse.’ “)

Start Date: 1/8/11
Finish Date: 1/14/11

Note Profile: 19 notes (246–264), all short and sweet

Speaking for myself, I especially miss Samantha a/k/a Elizabeth Montgomery, one of the earliest and most powerful of my many, many TV crushes. All my adult life all I’ve been looking for is one smart, beautiful woman with magical powers – is that so much to ask for? Unlike Derwood, I would have no problem letting her whip up a nice private island for us. Mr. Tate can go screw.

Um, where was I? Oh yeah, the Deathmarch. Lately I’ve been finding this book almost too easy; I kind of miss the desperate slogging of the early stages, which was strangely satisfying in the same way as exercising until you feel like throwing up. Still, it looks like this week’s reading includes an 10-page or so discussion of M*A*S*H, so that should be fun.

The Infinite Jest Deathmarch, Stage 13

'The late J.O. Incandenza's Meniscus Optical Products Ltd.'s development of those weird wide-angle rear-view mirrors on the sides of automobiles that so diminish the cars behind you that federal statute requires them to have printed right on the glass that Objects In Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear...'

Begin: Page 550 (“For reasons that Pemulis couldn’t for the life of him, Ortho Stice seemed to be in there…”)
End: Page 601 (“Orin’s smile wasn’t as cool as he thought as he told the seated figure that that was a matter of opinion.”)

Start Date: 1/1/11
Finish Date: 1/7/11

Note Profile: 16 notes (230–245), including the notorious #234

It’s time to get cranking again, people, don’t you think? It’s a new year and all, hopefully everyone slept in today, there’s no time like the present, etc.

Unilaterally moving everything back a day so we can start on the 1st—makes it neater, cleaner, easier to keep track of. See you next Saturday.

The Infinite Jest Deathmarch, Stage 12

(See page 513.)

Begin: Wherever you are now
End: Page 549 (“The possibility of Canadian involvement in the lethally compelling Entertainment’s dissemination is what had brought to metro Boston Rodney Tine, his retinue, and his ruler.”)

Start Date: 12/24/10
Finish Date: 12/30/10

Note Profile: Up through note 229. No problem.

This week before New Year’s ought to provide plenty of time for you remaining stragglers to catch up at this very moderate pace. If not, what will it take to keep you on board? A motivational speech? A small bribe…maybe, say, a Toblerone? Should I come to your house and read aloud to you? I don’t feel like we can afford to lose anyone at this late date, so let’s make a deal.

The Infinite Jest Deathmarch: Stage 11 1/2

This was meant to be a picture of a 1964 Ford Aventura, but, says WikiWallace, 'there is no such car.' This is your basic black 64 Mustang.

Begin: Page 503 (“The night after the chilly and sort of awkward joint Interdependence Day picnic for Enfield’s Ennet House Drug and Alcohol Recovery House…”)
End: ????

Start Date: immediately
Finish Date: 12/23/10

Note Profile: The daunting note 234 lurks somewhere in the near distance, but I think some of us have read that one already.

Everything seems to be up in the air at this time, as Mr. Byrne once noted; so I’m leaving this week’s target open-ended for the moment. Let’s reconvene later in the week and see where we are and where we want to be. Happy Adapted-Pagan-Winter-Solstice-Festival to you and yours.

The Infinite Jest Deathmarch: Placeholder

I’m on my way cross-country today, but slowly, slowly…haven’t even made it out of the Bay Area yet. Still, my web access is limited, so at the moment just a quick note to say…is this thing on? Who’s still on board? Comments so far this week from JES, Matt, and Debra…what about the rest of yez?

Also, it was suggested that we make this a low-page-count week on account of the holiday. I’m amenable to that if it’s what the people want, so speak now or forever hold your peace.