A beautiful meditation on karma and the way that life (not individual lives, but big picture “Life”) inevitably doubles back on itself. We’re all spinning on one Great Big Wheel.
A person continuing to talk on and on after others have left is a bit unbelievable to me. But there’s also something cinematic about it. Reminds me of the last scene in Blue Jasmine.
Nothing is sadder than a lonely person talking to themselves. I can’t keep thinking about that, it’s too dark. Also, the only thing scarier than turning into your parents is turning into your weird old aunt/uncle.
Critique: Meg has zero personality and Billy is too sucky. It made me not care about his ending. And what’s her ending??
Anyway, I love in fiction when writers do an abrupt zoom ahead. Like: “He/she doesn’t know this yet, but this is what’s going to happen eventually.” That’s a Jennifer Egan signature move. It’s surreal to see an entire life reduced to a sentence like that. It reminds me how quickly our real lives turn into expendable stories. And it makes unbearable things seem just a bit more bearable. Because, well... time.
It’s wild that these characters are 16 and 19 - such children!
Love that this story takes place in and references states you recently traveled through.
Omg when Egan does that with Rolph in Safari.
I think 9 is too high for this actually.
Short stories aren't supposed to have anything superfluous and the flatness of Meg has really been grating on me since yesterday. We don't learn or feel anything at all from or about her. Animate or disappear, Meg!