Tuesday, January 27, 2009

John Updike

John Updike, though you are someone that sometimes riled me, saying somewhat annoying things, you have always said them well, sometimes incredibly so. Reading Rabbit, Run was a thrill and made me get why people said your name with weight, an astoundingly awesome work. Rabbit Redux, though quite good, started to verge into some weird big statements about race that came off as patronizing and ill-thought out from a person as white as yourself. But I will admit that despite that and despite some sometimes smarmy book reviews in The New Yorker lately, you are an incredible writer - were, I guess; death bringing about the past tense now - that made me envious and also hungry, made me realize what beautiful poetry could be done in prose and some things about rhythm. And so we have lost something today, and we lose stuff everyday, big and small and small pieces of big things, big pieces of small things, and yet this loss is one I am sad for, perhaps this loss and my ability to feel it as such provoking feelings of sadness for losses I have been unable and unwilling to grieve for as of yet.

We all are headed to that same place too, and hardly any of us with the talent Updike had, and so it is a sorry excuse that we all have, thinking we should be granted a stay.

I listened to Jesus and Mary Chain on my way to work. After work, I went to the gym and had sex in the steamroom with some hot man, long hair, me with this thing for long hair. I ran into Diego and his boyfriend afterward on my way to the subway, always the two of them together all the time every time I see one, and that brought me down somewhat. But then I put on Pavement and felt better, felt pretty awesome in fact, stopped at Zargoza after getting off the train, the place reminding me of Bushwick, of something a bit more real than the unreality that is Manhattan. I ate the burrito and then went to Eastern Bloc, had some drinks, and ended up taking Alan home with me for a brief fuck, the two of us setting a time limit beforehand, him having to write a paper and me telling him he couldn't stay long because of that, though really I wanted the bed to myself after, just wanted to get off and for him to go, wanted to be able to sit here and type these things, meaningless words provoked somehow by the news of the death of someone far more capable, thoughts about writing, about life, about friendships and loneliness, provoked by his death. And bon voyage sir!

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