David Foster Wallace is an American genius whose finest hour came in 1996 with a magnificent essay in Harper's magazine on why luxury Caribbean cruises are a nightmare if you have either brains or taste. His talent were on display a few years later in a similar piece he wrote about a visit (from hell) to the Illinois State Fair. These and other essays are collected in his book A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again: Essays and Arguments
Why am I telling you this? Because I haven't thought about Foster Wallace in ages; until tonight, when I finished ChayyeiSarah's blow-by-blow-account of her Shabbaton (From Hell.) As I read the last of the 21(!) razer-sharp mini-essays, I thought, "Damn. I wish I had her talent." Then, it came to me: "Hey, she writes just like David Foster Wallace."
They both have a particular talent for analyzing an event or concept to death. They both have wonderful turns of phrase. Dave is snarkier, but Sarah is better at finding meaning where an ordinary person would not. And this Shabbaton most certainly was A Supposedly Fun Thing She'll Never Do Again.
I wonder if Dave is single? Or if he'd like to meet his Jewish Doppelganger? And if it works out, what kind of shadchunus should I expect? Do gentiles even pay shadchunus? I bet they would, if they could do it retail...
Stop. It doesn't matter. Go read Sarah's posts.
UPDATE: Esther says: If you want a complete table of contents of Sarah's (Mis)Adventures, go to http://jdatersanonymous.blogspot.com/2004/12/chayyei-sarah-reloaded.html