After much consideration, I’ve decided what my life’s calling will be.
Once I get settled in Sihanoukville and create a work, sleep, and social routine, I’m going to sit down in front of my computer, perhaps at a quaint ex-pat coffee shop, and write the Great American Novel.
J.D. Salinger came close with Catcher in the Rye. I read it as a sophomore in high school and haven’t bothered doing so again, but I think I can remember the gist: an angst-ridden teenager goes on a long diatribe about how terrible his life is, in, what turns out to be, a therapy session.
I guess To Kill a Mockingbird almost hit the nail on the head, but I didn’t get past the halfway mark on that one. If you answer the questions on the test with some crap about Boo Radley being complicated, then you’ll do fine.
1984? Just watch Soylent Green.
The Great Gatsby? Snooze Fest 1925 if you ask me.
As I Lay Dying? It took an upper-division college level course to understand what Faulkner was rattling on about. I’ll hand it to him, though. Dude can make required reading live up to its name. There’s no way I could’ve gotten away with just skimming the Wikipedia page for that one.
A Tale of Two Cities? That’s British. Did they teach you NOTHING in school?
The Iliad? Ok, I’ve taken this not-written-by-an-American joke one step too far.
I’d say there’s a big void in American literature that yearns to be filled with an eloquent story that’s devoid of platitudes on taking the moral high ground, facing adversity as a child, or swear words for the sake of swearing. This new Great American Novel, nay, this new International Epic will be nothing short of sophomore required reading and a totally awesome movie deal.