Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A footnote to a life.

Rest in Peace, David Foster Wallace. We love you. The world will miss you terribly. Thank you for your colorful multifaceted writing, for reminding me to enjoy life again and again over the course of two decades. You are wonderful.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wondering if DFW was taking Chantix.

The number of suicides is up to at least 37, plus over 200 attempts. I was the first to want to write this off to the side effects of quitting smoking, especially without a support network. I've gotta say, though, this stuff made me emotionally numb. I felt high, but I stopped caring about things. I also became very confused. I'm still confused.

Anonymous said...

The FAA has banned the use of the drug in pilots and air traffic controllers.

Be careful, everyone.

Anonymous said...

DFW was actually hospitalized for depression in the mid 80s, I just read. Ironic, as reading Infinite Jest coincided, for me, with a lessening of depression. It was 1996. I saw the book in a window. I got a little excited. At the time, that was a big deal - getting excited. And I hadn't even started it. I simply remembered reading the Broom of the System, almost a decade earlier, and the magic of it. I didn't remember the details. There was the City shaped like Jane Mansfield...

But regardless of my memory of any details, I remember that Broom of the System was special, almost magical, and some of its magic had remained in a corner of my brain, providing an emotional reaction in a period of intense emotional numbness. A few years prior to stumbling upon Infinite Jest, before all the depression stuff happened (I find it important to say here that this was NOT situational depression. It started at a time when I felt lucky, when things were going better than I hoped) (need footnotes ... aww, footnotes) I had stumbled upon the Girl with curious hair. Those stories stay with me as well - not the details but the emotional tone. And they didn't necessarily have an emotional tone themselves. They created an emotional reaction in me by their sheer vibrance and color. If I were to write fiction, I would write it like DFW. Or, heh, I would want to.

Reading Infinite Jest, I glimpsed the interest and magic possible in the world - just from one man's brain. My brain was capable of that too. I felt glimmers of glee at times. Other things happened, of course - Infinite Jest did not cure depression. Just as an unending "entertainment" cannot infinitely keep one happy, interested. Although we seek one thing that will provide this, infinitely ... it doesn't exist. Or maybe that's just the depression talking. Oh, but I'm not depressed. I'm just sad. That's so very different.

King of Balls said...

God bless you for hiring me, David Foster Wallace. I am the King of Balls ... and I am crying.

King of Balls said...

I am still, however, the King of Balls.

Italian Spidermant said...

Italian Spidermant loves you David Foster Wallace. But love doesn't cure depression. You can't feel love fully when when you're depressed. I am grateful that I'm not depressed, so I can feel fully said about your death.

Jesse said...

This is really sad. It's weird how he hired King of Balls on the morning of the day he died.

beck said...

14 miles away from a landfill grave
Never pawned my watch and chain
To the landlord living inside my head
Never paid my rent till the lights went dead
Then I saw my sign comin up the road
A dead ditch waiting for to bury my load
On the avenues in the plain of day
I threw a roosevelt dime in a bucket of rain

Now hold your hand onto the plow
Work your body till the sun goes down
What's left of death is more than fear
Let dust be dust and the good lord near
It's a little too much to ask of faith
It's a little late to wait for fate
So tell the angels what you seen
Scarecrow shadow on a Nazarene

Kindness will find you
When darkness has fallen
Round your bed
Kindness will follow
Children will wander
Till
The end

Anonymous said...

beck, you can do better than that, I think, with all your lyrics. how about that song you covered -- by the Rolling Stones. Also covered by Califone.

You know the one. No Expectations.

Take me to the station
Put me on a train
I got no expectations
To pass through here again

Once I was a rich man
Now I am so poor
Never in my sweet short life
I felt like this before

Your heart is a like a diamond
You throw your pearls at swine
And as I watch you leaving me
Pack my peace of mind

Your love is like the water
That splashes on a stone
Our love was like the music
It's here and then it's gone

So take me to the airport
Put me on a plane
I got no expectations
To pass through here again

Take me to the station
And put me on a train
I got no expectations
To pass through here again

Professor Marvel said...

I think you've hit the nail on the head, anonymous.

No Expectations.

How could we forget?

Admin. Marvel said...

Are you guys still talking about David Foster Wallace?

Assistant Marvel said...

RIP David Foster Wallace.

D.B. said...

I'm not sure what they're talking about.

D.B. said...

Maybe the difference between sadness and despair. Gushing sadness vs. Numb despair. Horrible, horrible stuff, the latter.

Beck said...

I posted those lyrics because they are from my song, Emergency Exit. David Foster Wallace took an emergency exit. That is all.

Anonymous said...

Beck's music and lyrics are often colorful to me in the way that one of the other anonymouses describes David Foster Wallace's writing, above. Very similar. Seeing that much imagination and color in one man's brain provides hope for my own brain, for my ability to continue to perceive color and richness in the world.

Beck, whatever you do, please do not kill yourself. Do not end cycle. Your existence keeps others from doing the same.

beck said...

Don't worry, anonymous, I won't end cycle. I may have the intense sadness, but not the numb despair. The latter's the one that puts you at risk for suicide, I believe.

Professor Marvel said...

Is that true, Beck?

Beck said...

I'm not sure Professor. Or, if I am, I'm not telling.

Paranoid and hostile said...

If you kill beck like you killed David Foster Wallace with your irreverence, I will bomb the workshop.

Paranoid and sentimental said...

Oh my God. You killed Kenny!

Professor Marvel said...

Fucking shit.

Professor Marvel said...

Wow, the workshop is like group therapy. I feel much better, at least for the moment. Thanks guys! Do you feel better?

Anonymous said...

You posted ... from the from the future!

Cold War Kids said...

We wrote a poem for you.

This Is Water'

First thing you taught me
Was to keep digging inside
At my intentions
Keep asking why why why

Second thing you taught me
Was to be sincere
Not like all these smart alec sarcastics
Drowning in fear

You reminded me -
This is water! And
It feels good to swim!
After you hooked me and you reeled me up
And threw me out again

Talked like professors
You talked like policemen and whores
You became so many people
I felt like I had known them before

The third thing you taught me
Is that when I'm waiting in line
At the supermarket checkout
That my time is not worth more than your time

Your head like a lightning rod
Your heart a cocoon
We certainly won't have another like you
Anytime soon.

april said...

I knew you guys were awesome.

This confirms it.

I downloaded part of the new album yesterday. I listened to Mexican Dogs like 10 times and I liked it more each time.