Okay, first, I am in love with Tobias Wolff’s reading voice: http://www.newyorker.com/online/2009/05/11/090511on_audio_wolff

As for “Emergency”…

I appreciate the language in it, i.e. “the road we were lost on cut straight through the middle of the world,” “the tang of evergreens stabbing us,” “the only light visible was a streak of sunset flickering below the hem of the clouds.” And they continue. I love the beautiful word choices. I love the big ideas combined with the minute details. I wish I could write like that.

I also appreciate the story–I am reminded of Kerouac’s The Road and Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men. A never-ending journey and an overt concern for bunnies. I love lines like this: “The bunnies weren’t a problem yet, or they had already been a problem and were already forgotten.” Apparently, I have a fascination with writer’s messing with my sense of time. Or I did have a problem with that, but I don’t now. Or, I am going to have a problem with it, but I don’t yet. =)

But… really… must we have the use of drugs? I find a bit of magic removed from stories when writers rely on the use of a good trip. Maybe it’s that I listened to the stories my dad told about his clients (he’s a substance abuse counselor), or maybe it’s my Baptist upbringing. Either way, I think magic is so much more fun when there is no explanation, or when the explanation is new, different–not drugs. On the other hand, Wolff thinks that because the story is so tightly written that it is different from a normal “tripping” story. I can see that, but I would question the necessity of the drugs.

In other news, my sister is going to save lives. She is in nursing school. 😉

Advertisements