Hi. How the roses speak verses to poets is none of my concern, for mine eyes are mine own and my words are yours to dwell upon. Repeat after me, that makes no sense.

Centrifugal force. Centripetal force. Your face will be torn apart by the two. Maybe that might help. Maybe it’ll let you see more with your eyes. When you see more, you can know more. If you know more, you can generally take better decisions (or so they say) and therefore live better. India needs an alternative cartoon network. I don’t mean an alternative Cartoon Network. I mean a bunch of alternative cartoons. Which can be watched by adults as well as children. And I’m going to give it to them.

I read Stoner recently. It’s an american novel. Authored by a guy named John William. The protagonist happens to be named William Stoner. Here are the opening couple of paragraphs of the book: (Do you know why the following isn’t copyright infringement? It’s because the amount of text that I’m taking out from the original work is a minute porportion of the total work. It’s also because in no way will I hamper sales of the book through this quote, because the actual work has so much to offer that no one who wants a glimpse fo the book is going to come here for such a purpose. It’s also because my use of the paragraphs is such that my work goes beyond the contents of the actual extract itself and in fact attempts a (shoddy) critique of the extract, and therefore does not make use of it directly. There is another parameter to decide whether the extract I’ve provided here is a legitimate instance of doing so, but I won;t go into it here because it can’t be applied to fictitious works that effectively and is therefore an inapplicable defence, and also becuase the preceding three defences would more than sway any kind of bench of judges in my favour)

William Stoner entered the University of Missouri as a freshman in the year 1910, at the age of nineteen. Eight years later, during the height of World War I, he received his Doctor of Philosophy degree and accepted an instructorship at the same University, where he taught until his death in 1956. He did not rise above the rank of assistant professor, and few students remembered him with any sharpness after they had taken his courses. When he died his colleagues made a memorial contribution of a medieval manuscript to the University library. This manuscript may still be found in the Rare Books Collection, bearing the inscription: “Presented to the Library of the University of Missouri, in memory of William Stoner, Department of English. By his colleagues.” An occasional student who comes upon the name may wonder idly who William Stoner was, but he seldom pursues his curiosity beyond a casual question. Stoner’s colleagues, who held him in no particular esteem when he was alive, speak of him rarely now; to the older ones, his name is a reminder of the end that awaits them all, and to the younger ones it is merely a sound which evokes no sense of the past and no identity with which they can associate themselves or their careers.

The way I ended up reading this book was a bit unusual for me insofar as i didn’t read it on the advice of people whom I know. I happened to come across two articles online, one on the nytimes and the other on the newyorker i think, that were about this book and how it was an underrated and forgotten classic. An underrated and forgotten american classic though, I find it apt to specify, seeing as the selective amnesia regarding the content and worth of works of literature operates at different paces whilst regarding literature from different countries, a phenomenon whose existence while debatable is one I buy into to a fair extent. The way I decided to read it in turn slightly changed the way I felt while starting. Usually, and especially with fiction, I just dive into the damn thing and stay down there for as long as it can manage to hold me. With this book however, and perhaps this is simply more the case with, er, classics, I stopped at various point in the prose and kind of weighed my response and current reaction to the sequence I was reading at the time. One such point where I stopped to register some kind of reaction, and the first of them in the case of this book, was at the end of the aforementioned quote. I got the feeling after reading it, that it was going to be a book I really, really enjoyed. Kind of like one of those lazy afternoons when you lie on the shady yet warm part of the garden and watch the insect go about their industry. And for some reason, this feeling kind of reminds of the word honeysuckle, if that helps.

A while after completing (!) the book I surmised that the prediction had held true; I had in fact enjoyed the book a fair bit, savoured it if you will, really getting the ruchi of it. Kind of like an extremely refreshing nap that leaves you ready to do whatever it is you want to do at the time. That lull in mental activity after reading a book is quite enjoyable in terms of the calmness that it brings. Something i noticed in retrospect about the book was that the amount, or indeed the level, of insight available from the point of view of the character in whose narration the book is set, seems to be closely linked to how far he is in his academic journey of self discovery. The days spent working as a fieldhand, while certainly described in detail, do not carry nearly as much insight about Stoner himself or his surroundings, as do those spent at a desk in the city.

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