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Um... I forgot to ask, do we need spoiler space for this one? I mean while there are probably people who haven't read the book, are there people who haven't seen the movie, either? or who want spoiler space anyhow? If so, let me know, I can add a separate spoiler section to future posts.

Anyhow.


I was almost tempted to skip this, but in some ways I guess it's as much a part of the story as the story itself, so I left it in, despite not being all that personally fond of it.

I don't know, I guess I've never been all that happy about the whole "I'll tell you a true story now, and it'll be completely made-up bull" thing, even when it's with a hefty wink, like this. (And geez, anyone else from the newsgroup remember other people arguing that the book really was really originally written by Morgenstern, really? I swear I remember a few threads like that.)

Still, the whole framing device certainly makes the story more... memorable than it otherwise would be. And help to pave the way for some of the other quirks (uneven chapter lengths, "short" asides to the audience about the so-called original) that help give the story character. And it indirectly paved the way for the use of Peter Falk in the original... so all in all, it's not without its merits.

Still, since it is an introduction and not a proper part of the story itself, it's hard to figure out anything meaningful to say about it. Other than perhaps to note that of course the things that Goldman is pointing out about Morgenstern (ie, having the gall to call his story a classic right out of the gate) are actually true about himself instead, which is I suppose the point.

Or to wonder why Goldman, in his introduction, decided to make himself out to be a bit of an ass? Maybe he figured that since the introduction on the whole is obviously false, if he's painting himself like this it'll obviously be false as well, so the reader will be left with a much better impression of him? I dunno.


The schedule.

Comments

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silmaril
Jun. 4th, 2010 04:16 pm (UTC)
Hell, the first time I started, I actually swallowed the framing device up until some ways in. (I was young and inexperienced.) And yes, it did come up in the newsgroup.
stormfeather
Jun. 6th, 2010 02:57 am (UTC)
From what I remember, I was much like khedron below, in that I knew (partly from Usenet, partly I hope from just common sense) that it was generally a framing story and that the Morgenstern stuff was nonsense, but thought that the rest of it was probably true or at least somewhat from real life. In other words, that he really had a wife like that, and an overweight son, and he was really a boorish ass to them and apparently didn't even realize it, or didn't care if others knew it.

khedron
Jun. 6th, 2010 02:49 am (UTC)
And it indirectly paved the way for the use of Peter Falk in the original... so all in all, it's not without its merits.

Ha! Indeed.

Or to wonder why Goldman, in his introduction, decided to make himself out to be a bit of an ass? Maybe he figured that since the introduction on the whole is obviously false, if he's painting himself like this it'll obviously be false as well, so the reader will be left with a much better impression of him? I dunno.

*edited after re-reading what you wrote*

I was wondering about that a bit myself -- being kind of literal, I took the family aspects at face value, even as I discounted the original Morgenstern authorship claims. I found myself wondering if he really meant to come off as being that boorish, or if this was just something that had changed between 1972 and now. OK, Wikipedia made me feel a little better about that, although his intended tone still puzzles me.

Edited at 2010-06-06 02:53 am (UTC)
stormfeather
Jun. 6th, 2010 03:01 am (UTC)
See comment above - the first time I read it, I was much the same. I figured that the Morgenstern angle was bunkum, but bought into the rest of it, figuring it was a lie interwoven with enough truth to make it seem real. But no, it's apparently all as much a fictitious story as the rest of the book.

And so yeah, I'm left wondering. Did he misjudge his audience and just assume everyone would immediately read it all as fiction, and thus figure that since it's fiction and he's painting himself as a bad guy, he must be the opposite (as mentioned in the entry)? Did he just decide he WANTED to come across as a boorish ass for some reason, maybe connected to the "being a giant dick makes you a Cool Person" school of thought?

I'm... perplexed.
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