Wednesday, September 19
A Country Without a Soul
Look, Mike, just because you're recuperating from jaw surgery does not mean I am going to take pity on you and sit idly while you muddy our waters with your loopy liberal idealism. No, sir! You can take your Vonnegut and shove it where the sun don't shine! In fact... What? What's that you say? You ask what I am reading? Oh, how cordial of you. Well, since you absolutely must know, I am reading A Power Governments Cannot Suppress, by the great Howard Zinn. Zinn and Vonnegut both served our country in World War II (The Good War) but believe you me, that's where the similarities end. For example, Vonnegut is dead and Zinn is alive. Also, Zinn is a historian while Vonnegut is a fabulist. Furthermore... oh fuck it, yeah Vonnegut is pretty sweet, eh? Surprised a man of your interests has not yet stumbled across any of his novels. Slaughterhouse Five and Cat's Cradle, you'll dig 'em. You say he "jokes gently and darkly." I like that. Sums up his style quite nicely. As someone familiar with his works of fiction but not his offerings as an essayist I agree with you that Vonnegut's style is simple. He's a quick read and a fun read but devastatingly spot-on with his satire of the depravity of humankind.