Monday, April 2, 2012

Plots

One thing I admire about Pynchon's gigantic doorstop of a novel, Gravity's Rainbow, is the theme of the thin thin line between pathological paranoia and a perceptive grasp of a narrative thread in life and in history. Of course, history is already a narrative someone has picked out and parsed in life, so it isn't surprising that the line there would be fuzzy, but in one's everyday existence, it is tempting to see reiterated themes, characters, etc. Whether this is a function of some compulsive urge to revisit past patterns or an actual glimpse of some underlying watermark, I don't know (or pathological paranoia).
I don't suppose I ever will know either, but it's interesting to ponder, isn't it, when one sees the years trailing behind her like a cycle of repeated themes and experiences. Maybe that's why people think age brings wisdom. But it probably isn't true. Just because one sees the patterns doesn't mean s/he knows what to do about them.

4 comments:

marly youmans said...

Oh, I definitely became less of a fool at 30 or thereabouts and have learned a thing or two since...

But not how to be a fan of GR! Perhaps I should try again.

Robbi N. said...

I gave up reading Gravity's Rainbow the first time through. But when I took my exams, I had to read it, and I came to appreciate this theme and certain silly passages in the book.

marly said...

No doubt that's what I need--an exam.

Robbi N. said...

No one needs that kind of exam! It was a nightmare! 4 publishable essays in 24 hours...