Friday, January 24, 2020

the last book I ever read (J. D. Salinger's Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction, excerpt five)

from Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction by J. D. Salinger:

Since I’m having a little trouble speaking for myself, I decided this morning, in class (rather staring the while, I’m afraid, at Miss Valdemar’s incredibly snug pedal pushers), that the really courteous thing to do would be to let one of my parents have the first word here, and where better to start than with the Primeval Mother? The risks involved, through, are overwhelming. If sentiment doesn’t ultimately make fibbers of some people, their natural abominable memories almost certainly will. With Bessies, for instance, one of the main things about Seymour was his tallness. In her mind she sees him as an uncommonly rangy, Texan type, forever ducking his head as he came into rooms. The fact is, he was five ten and a half—a short tall man by modern, multi-vitamin standards. Which was fine with him. He had no love whatever for height. I wondered for a while, when the twins went over six feet, whether he was going to send them condolence cards. I think if he were alive today he’d be all smiles that Zooey, being an actor, grew up small. He, S., was a very firm believer in low centers of gravity for real actors.

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