Thursday, July 13, 2006

Synopsis of ULYSSES

Leopold Bloom: Blazes Boylan. He. My wife he. This very afternoon, he. My house, he. She. As I cruise around town. Must remember that soap. Kidneys taste of urine. Not a damn thing can I do about it. Yet her, my love still. You know.

Stephen Dedalus: My father is the meanest old man who ever lived, the meanest old man and oh my beloved mother died so tragic and oh curse the Church. Oh, hello, Leopold, how's it going and aren't I the most precious young man you ever did meet while strolling the streets of Dublin.

Molly Bloom: Yes, yes, oh yes.

(Note, I'm only on page 387 out of 783, so the above is adapted from a discussion in Jane Smiley's 13 WAYS OF LOOKING AT A NOVEL and wearing your eyeballs out if said novel happens to be ULYSSES)

12 Comments:

Blogger M. G. Tarquini said...

Oh dear. Maybe you better make it longer. And put all the nouns and verbs the right way around.

11:47 PM  
Blogger Flood said...

Molly seems nice.

1:22 AM  
Blogger Ballpoint Wren said...

Heh! M.G., I think he did just fine!

The things I remember about Ulysses:

1) that kidneys taste like urine
2) that more professors should channel Sally Kellerman's reading of Molly's "Yes" scene in Back to School.

2:34 AM  
Blogger E. Ann Bardawill said...

That tears it.
I'm gonna read this damn thing too.

And what sort of doofus eats kidneys while they're still full?
.
.
.
Wait... that's not right...

2:37 AM  
Blogger M. G. Tarquini said...

You're going to read it, too? Gosh, golly, gee, E. Ann, we could start a Ulysses reading group. Everybody take 100 pages, try and explain what they read. We'll string it all together at the end, sell it for a buck a pop to plowed under college kids.

Yes, Molly seems nice. Leopold Bloom seems off his meds. Nobody should eat kidneys. They're full of cholesterol.

9:26 AM  
Blogger Bill Cameron said...

I think I read it while I was in college. At least, I roughly followed the synopsis and I remember have long tormented conversations about it going into the wee hours on weeknights before 8 a.m. classes. I remember opening it and pointing to something and then bloviating about it, or being bloviated at about it.

Actually, that doesn't mean I read it. That just means I carried it around with me. Which is far more likely.

1:10 AM  
Blogger Ballpoint Wren said...

Heck, if I have to read it again I'm getting it in an audio book.

10:30 AM  
Blogger Atyllah said...

I started reading it x 5. I gave it up for Portrait of the Artist - at least it was shorter. It's far easier to take the Ulysses tour around Dublin. More fun too!

4:30 PM  
Blogger angie said...

Good luck! You're already way farther along than I ever got. I've had the book for about 15 years and still haven't managed to get past the first chapter. Thanks for sharing your journey with us!

8:36 AM  
Blogger elainesbrain said...

Um - you asked if "baited breath" meant halitosis...

"Baited breath" was traditionally (actually) "bated breath", signifying "held breath". Slice of cheese on tongue nothwithstanding.

Enjoy Ulysses. I own a really expensive copy, limited edition, in the original typeface, typos and all. And Mr. Joyce and I share the same birthday.

Aside from that, that is the closest I get to Ulysses, personally. But I do get such pleasure out of watching others wrestle with it.

Bless you. :)

9:14 AM  
Blogger SegĂșr 95.20 said...

If anyone is looking for an audio book of ULYSSES, I highly recommend this 29-hour version dramatized by Irish national radio in 1982 - it's very reasonably priced on 3 disc MP3 - about $50. The actors really bring out the voices of the characters and narrators very clearly, and the production does a magnificent job on the sounds of the city, the interior and exterior settings, the music, etc. It really helps bring the book to life for people who are unfamiliar with the city! You can also listen to this series of radio programmes - one for each chapter of the book. Recommended. http://www.rte.ie/readingulysses/

3:51 PM  
Blogger ADRIAN said...

Haha! nice synthesis! but if you are reading ULYSSES for the first time i suggest to grab a copy of Harry Blamires' THE NEW BLOOMSDAY BOOK which practically guides you through the long winding non narrative style of Joyce. I just finished reading Ep. 9 and i was so delighted to hear Stephen discuss father-son relationship which is one of the central themes in the book.

2:41 AM  

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