He was unaffected by the singularities of time and place. His abode was anywhere. It was all the same to him whether he catheterized a pig at four o’clock in the afternoon in New Orleans or at midnight in Transylvania. . . . Yet I do not envy him. I would not change places with him if he discovered the cause and cure of cancer. For he is no more aware of the mystery which surrounds him than a fish is aware of the water it swims in.
“I dust a bit,” Ignatius told the policeman. “In addition, I am at the moment writing a lengthy indictment against our century. When my brain begins to reel from my literary labors, I make an occasional cheese dip.”
Of the obits I’ve come across this one seems the best.
15.4.1890. My father dies. L.C. For those who do not know, those last two letters do not stand for Lower Case, but for Last Cigarette. This is an annotation I find in a volume by Ostwald on positivistic philosophy, with which, full of hope, I have spent many hours and never understood. No one would believe this, but, despite its brevity, that annotation records the most important event of my life.
The boy has done it! He has won the title to his own existence, as plenary an existence now as Holden’s, by refusing to be stampeded like the ladies from Hattiesburg. He is a citizen like Holden; two men of the world they are. All at once the world is open to him. Nobody threatens from patio and alley. His girl is open to him too. He puts his arm around her neck, noodles her head. She feels the difference too. She had not known what was wrong nor how it was righted but she knows now that all is well.
I am attracted to movie stars but not for the usual reasons. I have no desire to speak to Holden or get his autograph. It is their peculiar reality which astounds me.
Am I mistaken or has a fog of uneasiness, a thin gas of malaise, settled on the street?
He [Eddie] understands everything out there and everything out there is something to be understood.