Elizabeth Nolan Brown // Blog

media. music. feminism. food. city-dwelling. story-telling. and other things.

My Salinger Eulogy

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She was a girl who for a ringing phone dropped exactly nothing. She looked as if her phone had been ringing continually ever since she had reached puberty. — A Perfect Day for Bananafish

Oh, Salinger. I love you for sentences like that one. Determined all the more now to serve bananafish at our upcoming “Literary Feast.” But I’ve always avoided reading details about your life. Why? When I have always gotten so entangled in the personal myths surrounding my other favorite author, F. Scott Fitzgerald. I don’t know. I’m glad I did, though. Reading all your newsprint eulogies, I’m not really liking what I learn. Correspondences with teenage girls? Locking your wives in the house? Oh my. It all makes me want to rethink naming my first-born son, should I have a first-born son, Seymour (the cat is already Holden; there’s nothing I can do about that). But I think I shall just choose to ignore it, your urine-drinking, your love affairs, your Scientology (your macrobiotic diet! A sign of true insanity, surely). I will ignore it, and remember you for the perfect stories you have told me, and the impact you have had on my life (it is true: my boyfriend and I first bonded over Seymour: An Introduction). I look forward to reading Hapworth 16, 1924 – another story about the Glass family I didn’t know existed? How?, indeed! And to the potentiality that, upon your death, oodles and treasures of unpublished stories, just waiting for our eyes and ears, will be found. You could be 2010’s Tupac, or Elliott Smith. Wouldn’t that just be grand?




Written by Elizabeth

January 29, 2010 at 11:15 am

Posted in Culture, Lit

Tagged with ,

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