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'kay, so I was looking around trying to figure out where one can get Kojo Nnamdi's show (does anyone know?) and I stumbled on this happy bit of news. Dude, I can't believe they're making a film of Tristram Shandy!

They say they are counting on nobody having read the book, but I have (ha! take that!) mostly because I understand that Laurence Sterne was a contemporary and possibly a friend of Oliver Goldsmith, from whose brother my family seems to have descended. I admit it's a pretty obscure book, and it's hard to get through because it rambles, but it's so worth it. It is truly a bizarre work. Centuries before Douglas Adams or Terry Pratchett, Sterne wrote a book of such delightfully absurd humor that hardly anyone read it then, and hardly anyone reads it now, but it's still considered a classic.

It must have been a nightmare for the printers at the time (1760 or so), because it required strange graphical flourishes, unusual characters, and sometimes left pages blank, and put chapters in the wrong order. You could think of it as a convoluted and goofy forerunner of House of Leaves in that way. It's similarly hard to read, and similarly fun.

Anyway, you should go to the NPR link above, and listen to the audio if you're able. They discuss the difficulties in filming certain types of books, and they highlight Naked Lunch (so you Burroughs fans should appreciate it).

Uh. Sorry I'm so prolific this week. I tend to post a lot when I'm stressed. Forgive me?

Comments

( 28 comments — Leave a comment )
citizen_ken
Jan. 26th, 2006 03:55 pm (UTC)
Oh, it's on WAMU (88.5 fm). It will also be webcast from www.wamu.org, and subsequently archived so that you can listen to it from home at your leisure.

fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:25 pm (UTC)
danke!
railwaymadness
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:05 pm (UTC)
colinmac just showed me a trailer for that this morning! We are v. excited, although we had never heard of it before.
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:26 pm (UTC)
ooh! Can you tell me where to find the trailer?
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 05:11 pm (UTC)
Like woah! I can't watch Quicktime from work, but I'll be rushing home to see it. Thanks.
gustavvs
Jan. 27th, 2006 09:09 pm (UTC)
it interesting. but the movie isn't about the book but trying to make a movie about an impossible book to make a movie from...
boadiccea
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:18 pm (UTC)
I'll have to listen to it later...I've heard of the book, does that count? I wonder if Chad has read it... (My guess is "yes") :)
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:27 pm (UTC)
I'd love to talk with him about it if he has. I read it in college, so my memory of it is a bit weak. And, in fact, it's so disjointed that forming memories of the narrative in the first place it pretty tricky.
chadu
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:09 pm (UTC)
I've tried starting it in the past year (Cliff Notes in hand), but Life Interfered.

Maybe we could set it up the bomb -- er, as a little reading circle thingy? It might serve as the "excuse" for a monthly Sunday dinner or something...

Also: I'ma go watch the trailer now.

Also also: Apparently, Tristram Shandy is wrapped up in the internal mythology and rituals of Skull & Bones.


CU
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 07:32 pm (UTC)
Ooh! Ad hoc book club. Good idea.
boadiccea
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:19 pm (UTC)
Oh, and sweetie, to my mind, you could never post *enough* - I like that you're posting more these days! (Tho' I'm sorry you're stressy - need some flashcards/study aid?)
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:28 pm (UTC)

you could never post *enough* - I like that you're posting more these days!

Thanks, darlin'.

need some flashcards/study aid?

Yes, indeed! In fact, please watch your email. I'm got a cunning plan :)
boadiccea
Jan. 26th, 2006 05:01 pm (UTC)
Awesome - email is being watched. :)
louiseroho
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:41 pm (UTC)
If you liked "House of Leaves" have you heard the album by the author's sister,
Haunted ?
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:47 pm (UTC)
Oh, yeah. Love that album!
louiseroho
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:58 pm (UTC)
Me too. Any her Eponymous one.
I cannot wait for her to get out of her contractual entanglements so she can publish more music.
She's what Tori could have been if she had kept it personal and accessible.
troyswann
Jan. 26th, 2006 04:47 pm (UTC)
Loooove Sterne.

That book is hilarious. What kind of autobiography starts before the author is born? And the one black page!

That guy was an unmitigated genius. I think he was a post-modernist who found a time machine and decided he liked ruffles so he never came home.
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:42 pm (UTC)
He certainly is an anachronism.
eac
Jan. 26th, 2006 05:00 pm (UTC)
I'm chuffed about this film coming up, too. I've never managed to get more than 75 pages into Tristram Shandy, but those 75 pages make me giggle. Lots.
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:42 pm (UTC)
Oh, man, it hurts my diaphragm with the laughing!
timquestionmark
Jan. 26th, 2006 05:06 pm (UTC)
the Kojo show

http://www.wamu.org/programs/kn/index.php

I think they have podcasts too
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:43 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I have been listening.
minniethemoocha
Jan. 26th, 2006 05:23 pm (UTC)
I've actually enjoyed the greater volume of Fenriss traffic lately! Feel free to post with reckless abandon.

Love!
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:44 pm (UTC)
Ah, thank you, my darling. I have been wanting to try to call you, but with studying in the evenings I can never find the time. I am thinking of you, though. And I love you!
aghrivaine
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:07 pm (UTC)
Tristram Shandy. I know it sounds powerful familiar... where's it from? I probably read this in my youth and have forgotten all about it.
fenriss
Jan. 26th, 2006 06:45 pm (UTC)
Well, here's the wiki entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tristram_Shandy

British writer, published the book in a number of volumes beginning, I think, in 1759. It's odd. And funny.
aghrivaine
Jan. 26th, 2006 07:08 pm (UTC)
Now I remember! My mom was a huge fan. I think she even joined a fan club or something. She was crazy about Tristram Shandy and Wilkie Collins. (obviously very different writers)
( 28 comments — Leave a comment )