for now a few years I have been writing a novel or a book that as is said revolves around an actual--whatever that might be-- artist: JOHN WESLEY, not to be confused with the founder of Methodism ... in this section hats are talked about and their connection to atomic testing in Western deserts...
(another prepared slide appeared in a recent NOTRE DAME REVIEW
A FAR AWAY PLACE
Wesley has talked of discovering his dead father and the hat on the hook near the door not to be put on his head ever again and Jack never wore a hat as far as I know… a lifetime summed up in one article… that is how we thought back then I am telling Jack, I think it was an old Esquire magazine where there was an article how to be successful in college and one of the key points was to put something on the wall and not explain it--- like a dented Maserati hubcap--- but you were allowed to hint as to the nature of the article, the associations of the article with some intimate activity or display of such activity while the weight of these words seem to drive us into a hole, for a moment or three, Jack is saying, as a way to wake the dead from their graves--- but I am not thinking of zombie movies as I never believed in them and maybe you can’t believe in them in Southern California since creatures coming out of the desert seem to have more authenticity and we tried not to think that the atom bomb tests were going off closer than anyone dare think about, always avoiding looking at maps of the western part of the United States as they made it all too clear how close these tests were in Nevada or New Mexico... this was before people went to Las Vegas though they went to Reno for a divorce so Reno didn’t seem to be in Nevada but I knew it was in Nevada and I knew what was going on there… those creatures came out of the desert and we had plenty of desert in California… when I came to New York people talked about getting under your school desk during those air-raid drills as they were called and I guess we worried about Japs as we called them during the war coming into America by way of the ocean but the atom bomb was much closer and then it wasn’t close anymore once I was in New York City and being in France took the atom bomb even further away, if I can say something like that, though the French man who told me the joke about why Chinese people have those narrow eyes was always telling Hannah the weather had changed because of the tests the Americans and Russians had been making with their atom bombs… I don’t think anyone worries about atom bomb tests anymore.
There is a pause, Jack drinks from the glass of water and is saying, maybe hats went away when people no longer worried about atomic tests… hats were always some sort or protection from as they say the elements and people were always hearing about atomic elements but then people are no longer hearing about atomic elements so hats just went away I guess to be replaced by all the bad stuff people put into their stomachs and how they are supposed to avoid this or that but what I don’t understand: why do people seem to get fatter and fatter when there’s all this talk about the junk you eat and junk inside even the food that is not junk?
THE TRADITIONAL NOVEL WHILE EXPECTING CONSISTENCY AND ORDER IS SOMETIMES AS IT WERE INVADED BY AN ILLUSIVE SECTION THAT IS SKIPPED BY THE NODDING EDITORIAL EYE AND PEN.
The room behind the room where Wesley sits in his chair is the scene of the food preparation. He is not provided a menu with pencil to check off his desires. He is presented with bowls and expected to empty them. The food seems to be prepared in such a way that either a fork or a spoon are the only eating instruments Wesley needs when moving the food from bowl to mouth. Gradually the spoon is likely to come to be the sole instrument of movement and the observer should not be jumping ahead of the inevitable narrative.