Ruggles Renga (Pynchon)

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Ruggles Renga (Pynchon)

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Aug 8, 2006, 12:02 pm

I'm just finishing up Crying of Lot 49 today and, as I was reading it (in my local diner, after doctor's appointment and voting in the hot CT primary), I had an idea to try out with you all.

I remember, years (decades?) ago, a multi-generational group of dear friends who would sit around the small fire in my tipi. We would make up a story cycle, sort of in the style of the old Japanese Renga. One of the kids would ALWAYS start out with "It was a dark and stormy night..." and pass some "sacred" object to the next person, who would then add to the story. It was great fun (sometime during the night Elvis would always show up, with many groans and "oh no! not Elvis again's" around the circle, along with UFOs and a few other twists that were always added into the story.

I'm not sure how we ever ended the story ... maybe it was when there was only one person left awake or when the fire finally sputtered out.

Rengas were poems that Japanese wrote in much the same way (see for more info that you would ever want to know).

So, my idea for this thread is to take one SHORT line from any of Thomas Ruggles Pynchon's writings to start a whole new story (a collaboration(?) between the Great Elusive One and all of his admirers?) and then each of us can pick a subsequent quote from any of his writings with which to follow up.

My hope is that: (a) the quote you pick might have SOMETHING to do with the previous quote (but, then again, random twists are what Life is all about, right?); and (b) that individual quotes aren't too long (pithy one-liners would be idea, but, on the other hand, hmmm.... what shall we say, oh, how about no more than a paragraph of, say, a hundred words or less for the upper limit (of course, these are just arbitrary "rules" just begging to be broken)(heh heh grin)

Maybe it would also be nice to at least tell what book the quotation is from (along with chapter or page or some other Pointsman).

I don't know .... it is just a passing thought on a beautiful day ... maybe it will die a quick, quiet death, but, then again, who knows - maybe the One Great Truth of the Universe will finally emerge from Thomas's Words and Our Own Collective Subconscious Efforts.

(Oh, sorry ... I think that's over 100 words, isn't it).


"In the end, only kindness matters."

Edited: Aug 10, 2006, 11:36 am

"Communication is the key," cried Nefastis.

(Crying of Lot 49 - Chapter 5, p.77 in my edition)

Aug 8, 2006, 11:02 pm

But they produced nothing but talk and at that not very good talk. (V., 317)

Aug 10, 2006, 11:35 am

No one else here cares for the penetralia of the moment, or last mysteries: there have been too many rational years. The paper has piled too thick and far.

(GR, 426)

5jimweatherall First Message
Aug 25, 2006, 10:39 am

He understood it to be another deep nudge from forces unseen, almost surely connected with the letter that had come along with his latest mental-disability check, reminding him that unless he did something publicly crazy before a date now less than a week away, he would no longer qualify for benefits.

(Vineland, 3)