the life of richie


Posted in is, Rich's book club by Rich on October 14, 2009

Karen, Rich and Patty meet at “Kay’s Place” she hates that, Karen does; “Kay/K,” which is what the little one calls her at school to discuss the first three chapters of Ulysses. Chinese food is ordered: veggie dumplings and scallion pizza and spring rolls with dipping sauces. And fortune cookies. There is talk of false fathers (like their supervisor at school and in Hamlet) and erect Buck Mulligan; Karen has made a note of that: Buck Mulligan erect.

Patty has typed up the reading schedule so the three will be finished by June in time for their proposed sojourn to Dublin. Rich texts Karen before the meeting, “Is everyone coming?” and Karen texts back, “You, me, and Patti” with an implied “?” as if to augur everyone. So they are like three trim, casually attired scholars in a parapet, they are. Karen writes on the first page of her edition So happy! They drink Guinness and Harp at Karen’s pub table and discuss Joyce’s haughty, turgid tome, like digging into a rich, plump repast. Druidy druids; Rich and Karen both like that phrase, and there are others that are noted, and Beckett is broached, Catholicism catechized (the Cathoholic Joyce), the significance of rosewood and wetted ashes parsed, and an ashplant is a walking stick. We have grown out of Wilde and paradoxes, Rich has written; even Wilde was betrayed with a kiss, by a boy, by an English boy, by a Bosie. Karen’s Virginia Woolf doll is wearing a Phillies cap. “She almost took her top off while watching the game yesterday,” Karen jokes. (Oh, Kay.) Kinch? Why Kinch? Rich makes a note to Google it later; Google later says Buck calls it Stephen “presumably a patronizing reference to Stephen’s wit”. Rich also Googles Ireland World War I Germany to find out about Ireland’s relationship to Germany during World War I. Wikipedia opines, “However, a smaller, more radical element of Irish nationalists took the opportunity of the war to launch an armed rebellion against British rule, with German help.” Is it time for the shortbread? I could eat the whole box. Is it time for the Walkers shortbread; again? Silently, in a dream she had come to him… Hear this here: Thought is the thought of thought. All agree: the language is to be loved (if Stephen is a bit of a drip sometimes, a bit of an anorak). There is something about the Oomb, allwombing tomb of the haughty, hefty tome.

Rich’s fortune, heralded by smiley faces, announces: “You are working hard.” All laugh; the subtext: “You are such a Stephen of late.”

Rich laughs; so happy!