A book of essays by David Foster Wallace. The title track is about taking a luxury cruise, something he was too wonderfully neurotic to enjoy. My favorite is E Unibus Plurum, an essay about writers and television, but also about voyeurism and creativity and all that good stuff. That essay also contains (at the beginning of a sentence, the beginning of a paragraph, the beginning of a section, so it stands out) the fabulous phrase: existentiovoyeuristic conundra notwithstanding. There are also essays on fairs, tennis and tornadoes, and Lost Highway.

Also should be mentioned (disclaimer): like any DFW, this book will not be enjoyed by people who don't like long words, tangents, or footnotes.

I can't think of a better phrase than "wonderfully neurotic" to describe this book.

I just read the title essay today, and I wanted to insert a personal note. Winston, the ping pong pro slash DJ is an alumnus of my alma mater, the University of South Florida. He is a perfect example of the remarkably stupid USF business major slash pimp wannabee, which makes up about 99% of the fraternity population on campus. Wallace reports that Winston was going to change his major from business administration to "multimediated production" (sic), which to my knowledge (and I'm a teacher and an academic advisor at USF) has never been a major at USF - or anywhere else for that matter.

Five years after the cruise I would imagine that Winston, who would be 31 now, has long been bounced out of USF on academic probation, but you never know. I think I will embark on a personal quest to track down Winston and bitchslap him.

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