The Ming From Mongo Show (mingfrommongo) wrote in infsum,
The Ming From Mongo Show

I finished Infinite Jest last night, a bit before the end of The Infinite Summer.

I still have bits of it rolling around in my head, haven't yet figured out all I think I can. And but so I have some desire to re-read parts to try to put some things together in my mind (which makes the book "The Entertainment"). The book sits on the bedside table, just in case. I was not as impressed or irritated by the ten dollar words as I thought I might be, and over all, I really thought it was not that difficult a read, structurally. My old eyes found it more difficult physically than psychically to read five-page-long end notes of agate type. And end notes that refer to other end notes I found very irritating. I found it easy to give myself over to the quirks of style and let the story unfold before me, which is good since self-sacrifice/negation is a strong theme through the book. Characters give themselves to their calling or Substance, or Higher Power to the point of becoming something Other or to un-becoming, or de-mapping. When I found the Infinite Summer online, I explained it to friends as a book club/support group for people who wanted to read this one famous book. It turns out that that was a perfect description, and an appropriate way to tackle Infinite Jest. Much like the AA meetings in the story, The Infinite Summer (and the infsum community here at LJ) was a source of cliches of motivation (only 75 pages a week, just get past page 200, &c.) that would only work if I didn't think too hard about their meaning and just accepted them and opened the book One Day At A Time. Which I did. 1079 pages in 50 days - below average consumption for me, but that's OK. I'm glad I did it, and as I said, I'm still working on it, even though I've finished reading.
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