Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Hold it tightly by its little tentacle

"I came," she said, "hoping you could talk me out of a fantasy."

"Cherish it!" cried Hilarius, fiercely. "What else do any of you have? Hold it tightly by its little tentacle, don't let the Freudians coax it away or the pharmacists poison it out of you. Whatever it is, hold it dear, for when you lose it you go over by that much to the others. You begin to cease to be."

For a few weeks now I've been scouring local bookstores for a copy of The Crying of Lot 49, by Thomas Pynchon. I have some Pynchon on my shelf that I mean to get to some day, but now, now! — since that episode of Mad Men with Pete Campbell on the train reading The Crying of Lot 49 — I have to read that Pynchon first, and now.

Were it available as an ebook, I'd have downloaded it by the time that episode's final credits had finished rolling.

By an amazing coincidence, the day I've coordinated my schedule to make a lunch-hour trip to a particular bookstore on which I'm betting to have an actual physical copy is the day I receive news that Penguin has struck a deal with Pynchon, and his books are available digitally as of today.

I wouldn't be surprised if the Mad Men effect played a role in nudging both parties to reach an agreement.

See also: Why the Hell is Peter Campbell Reading The Crying of Lot 49?

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