Tuesday, June 28, 2011

From Peter Cameron's "The City of your Final Destination":

"Violence is terribly underrated," said Adam. "It's so - so expeditious. I'm always asking Pete to smack me. 'Just smack me,' I tell him."

"Pete would never smack you," said Arden.

"Yes, I know, said Adam. "Yet I think we would be so much happier if he did. Did you ever smack Jules?"

"Yes, in fact," said Arden. "Once or twice."

I should be taking notes or something, Omar thought. I should have brought a tape recorder. Suddenly it seemed exhausting, impossible: How do you write a biography? he wondered, when there is so much, when there is everything, an infinity, to know. It seemed impossible. It was like compiling a telephone book from scratch. He sipped again from his martini.

"You often had that smacked-about coital glow," said Adam.

"Oh, Jules never smacked me," said Arden. "You're mistaken if you think he did."

"Oh, I never thought he did. I assumed the smacking was all yours. What about you, Mr. Razaghi? I understand you are affianced. Does your fiancee smack you? Or you her? Although you don't appear to be the smacking type. Or perhaps you are above all that?"

"I am not engaged," said Omar.

"Pardon me," said Adam. "I have been misinformed. My sources err."

"There is something so repellingly Victorian about any couple," said Adam. "The smugness, the sense of sanctity and safety and superiority; it's why God invented smacking. I am sure the Victorians were constantly smacking one another. It's why they wore all those hideous clothes: to hide their bruises."

It's not a great movie; but the book is very readable and entertaining...

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