Good luck
Posted by Desert Fox on Mon, 03/20/2006 - 6:09pm.
I tried to read Tristam Shandy recently. I suppose I should give it another shot. I'm generally pretty good at parsing that 18th century let's-see-how-many-words-we-can-take-to-say-something-simple language, but I don't think I even made it past the first chapter of Tristam Shandy.

It reminded me -- and you know how irritating it is when a book unexpectedly brings to the forefront of your innocent thoughts somebody you'd rather not remember -- of this arrogant bastard of a professor I had in grad school, who, much to the chagrin of his hapless students who wanted only to distill the essence of the subject at hand, interjected into any given sentence of his lecture so many asides, parenthetical statements, by-the-bys, anectodal bits and pieces, irrelevant sentiments, self-corrections, reflections, and roundabout clauses that by the time he, nearly panting with the effort of saying everything that could possibly or impossibly be connected to the purported theme of his statement, got to the end of his overwhelmingly volumnious sentence, you, the aforementioned hapless student, had completely lost hold of the tenuous thread of thought with which the said supposedly erudite scholar had commenced to inculcate into your eager mind.[/ShandyMode]

Yeah, it was kind of like that. I tried to read it because I'd read in so many other books that it was so damned funny. So maybe it's one of those rare cases in which the movie is better than the book? I think that would be a first in my experience, but it's always possible.

To add insult to injury, this prof was attempting -- totally unsuccessfully -- to teach a somewhat specialized branch of mathematics. I think he was basically in love with the sound of his own voice.

"Life is too short for grief. Or regret. Or bullshit." -- Edward Abbey, Vox Clamantis in Deserto
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