Thursday, April 12, 2007

I Will Always Love This Man

For Kurt Vonnegut:
1. Listen. The book Bluebeard changed my life.
a. It was the first Kurt Vonnegut book I ever read.
b. It was given to me by Robin in the 11th grade, which really sealed the deal on her becoming my best friend.
c. It is about an artist, and I think I learned more about art history from that book than from any of the art history books I've read.
d. I made myself memorize part of it, in the hopes I'd get to use this against one of my teachers: "To anyone who can draw, the idea of putting the appearance of something into words is like trying to make a Thanksgiving dinner out of ball bearings and broken glass.
e. When I went to New York for the first time, I wanted to see the Museum of Modern art because that was such a climactic scene in this book, and I think of it everytime I go there.

2. Slaughterhouse Five
a. I tried to talk my high school English teachers into letting us read that book instead of all the damn Shakespeare.
b. At MCA when I was a freshman, we did read the book, thanks to the fabulous English teacher, Ed (I wish I could remember his last name).
c. We also watched the movie in class. I did not like it, but I understand that Mr. Vonnegut did.
d. I re-read that book last year.

3. Cat's Cradle
a. What can you say about this book but holy shit?
b. RJA has some interesting theories about this book.
c. A former bat-shit crazy roommate stole my best copy of this book.

4. Sirens of Titan - holy shit. This book still blows my mind when I think about it.

5. God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater
a. I read this book, which is freaking hilarious, in the car alone with my stepdad from Panama City to Memphis.
b. I kept laughing out loud, but was unable to explain to him why, because the book is just too nutty, and I didn't think he'd agree on the hilarity of it anyway.
c. I memorized something from this book, too - Mr. Rosewater's favorite poem, which he saw on a bathroom wall: "We don't piss in your ashtrays, so don't throw your butts in our urinals." Or something to that effect.

6. Breakfast of Champions
a. I'm with you on this one, Dwayne.
b. I did enjoy this movie, which had Bruce Willis and Nick Nolte in it. Albert Finney as Kilgore Trout. Mr. Vonnegut himself had a cameo.
c. Love the drawings in this one.

7. Slapstick
a. I still sometimes think about how in this book gravity stopped working for a few seconds, and how that changed all of civilization, and how much that idea freaks me out.
b. I love how his books have subtitles, this one is: Slapstick, or Lonesome No More!

8. Deadeye Dick - blam.

9. Jailbird
a. I read this one in 11th grade - I would read it during class and totally space out - I felt like I was in New York instead of in my American History class.
b. When I went to MCA, Amy Carter was there also and I always envied that her father (Jimmy Carter) was mentioned in a Kurt Vonnegut book.

10. There are plenty of his books that I have not read. I have been saving them all for this sad, sad day. So it goes.

I gave this to Robin when she moved away when I was in 12th grade (I'm still a bit peeved at her parents for that). Now, however many years later, we do not know what my note means.


Robin said...

"...hope it lasts forever!" I made an audible gasp when I saw the news this morning....and I have been thinking about you and him all day. Godspeed, Mr. Vonnegut

dwayne said...

your list is better than mine

Elizabeth Alley said...

nah, it's just longer.