Sometimes I miss stuff.
When I read, sometimes I get so excited about what I’m reading that I miss something very important to the story. Like the point of the story. Or a major turning point in the plot. Most often, I miss it when someone dies. I don’t like death much. I try to ignore it, even when I read.
Most of the time, nobody knows I’ve missed something. Most of the time, I don’t either. Most of the time, I go on blithely thinking that one thing happened when, in fact, something else entirely happened. As a result, the books I read tend to be quite cheerful.
In college, I read Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury. Have you read it? I did, although this time I am quite sure I didn’t race to the end because I enjoyed it. I think I raced to the end of the book so that Faulkner would shut up. But when I got to class, I discovered I’d missed a tiny little detail. Oops. Because everyone was talking about Quentin Compson’s death.
Spoiler alert: If you haven’t read the book – Don’t.
I mean, if you haven’t read the book and plan to, don’t continue reading this blog. Do something else. Click on “My Favs.” Click on the blogs in my blog roll. Click on Amazon.com and see what other classics you haven’t read. Most of them, at least those NOT written by Faulkner, are really great books.
Anyway, back to The Sound and The Fury.
I was very confused that my classmates seemed to think that Quentin Compson had died! They had to be wrong, I thought. I clearly remembered the last time he appeared in the novel: Quentin was a freshman at Harvard, and he went swimming in the Charles River. I think that the line was actually “Quentin walked into the Charles until his hat floated.” I figured that, because he was a Southerner, he wanted to keep his hat on at all times; that river gets pretty chilly, you know. Besides, Southerners have some odd customs, and at the time I read this book, well, I didn’t know the half of it.
So there I was, taking American Literature 101, reading Faulkner, occasionally walking across the bridge that had plaques about Quentin Compson’s suicide, and I missed the part where he offed himself. Totally.
Well, you must admit it was an odd literary ploy.
But sadly, that wasn’t the last time I missed something. It still happens. I can read a whodunit, and not only not guess who done it, but read it again a year later, and not guess again. Perhaps I am just subconsciously thrifty.
So when a week or so ago, the blogs I follow started disappearing from my inbox, I wasn’t overly concerned. After all, we all go through slow periods. And then I blamed it on the build-up to the Thanksgiving holiday; everyone must be busy. Surely it was simply a coincidence that everyone was having a slow period simultaneously. Strange things DO happen, you know.
BUT as it turned out, somehow I missed the fact that I accidentally “unfollowed” all the blogs I had consciously, intentionally and with knowledge aforethought decided to follow. Oops. I have now re-followed and re-subscribed.
Sorry. Sometimes I just miss stuff.