Monday, October 21, 2013

Please Join Me as I Have a Midlife Crisis and Read James Joyce’s Ulysses



I just turned 40 today, and, therefore, I am contractually obligated to have a midlife crisis and ergo must do something crazy. I’ve been surveying my options. I could buy a sports car, but I don’t care anything or know anything about cars. I could have an affair, but my wife might not like that. I could jump out of a plane, but I’m afraid of heights and flying—mostly I’m afraid of dying which has necessitated this midlife crisis in the first place.

So I’m reading James Joyce’s Ulysses. Reasons why:

--I’m a writer and pretend to know stuff about literature.
--I’ve been to Dublin a few times.
--I’m not going to climb Everest.
--It was published on Joyce’s 40th birthday.

I don’t believe in bucket lists (or YOLOing). That’s a fundamental misunderstanding of life, as if it were just a checklist of experiences to collect (GOTTA CATCH ‘EM ALL!). Life’s a random barrage of sensation barely comprehended, and it’s better to cultivate a savoring enjoyment of all the small pleasures that happen your way. But, that said, you got to do something before you hit the grave, so for me it might as well be reading this Modernist masterpiece.

Though, I have tried to read Ulysses before and failed. So check back to watch me quite possibly fail again, miserably. Or quietly. Or just skip it and watch The Walking Dead.

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