Yesterday was a successful if menial day for me. Not only did I mangage to get my laundry done (yay!) but I also finally finished my lastest re-read of the classic Jack Kerouac novel On The Road. Every few years, I like to dig out that book and give it another read because it remains one of my favorite books. With the forthcoming film adaptation on the way, I figured it was the perfect time to give the book another read thru. Upon completion of the book, and because I’m in a very Beat Generation mood these days, I started reading Jack Kerouac and Allen Gingsberg: The Letters … fascinating stuff!
In the days WAY before the Internet, back when long distance telephone calls were very costly, folks used to write letters to one another to keep up with one another’s lives. Among authors, letters to one another were the perfect way for stories and poems to take early shape. Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg penned long letters to one another for years and very smartly kept those letters for posterity. We now have access to those letters which gives us new insight into the minds of both authors. I just got started so I haven’t read anything too juicy yet … but I’m excited.
Just a quick follow-up note on On The Road … I’m not sure if it’s my advancing age or if it’s something else but this latest read-thru of On The Road wasn’t as charming as I remember. The only thing that kept resonating with me is how … bummy Jack and Neal really are in the book. For various reasons, the friends spend years traversing the country with little to no money, begging for scraps, sleeping on the street and stealing from others. Neal goes one further and marries multiple times (sometimes at the same time) and fathers multiple children with different women — abandoning them all in one way or another along the way. I dunno, when I first read the tales of Jack and Neal on the road, their life of hitchhiking across America sounded adventurous. This time, it just felt … dirty and sad. Still, the true beauty of the book lies in Kerouac‘s words. But … I dunno, maybe as I get older I am falling more in line with “the man” than with the adventurous spirit of youth. I’m hoping the carefree spirit of On The Road will translate in the forthcoming film. I need to be charmed again.
I have no plans for today … more reading, probably. It’s going to be a quiet Tuesday for me … I hope it’s a great Tuesday for you.