[percy-l] dead

KMitch2626 at aol.com KMitch2626 at aol.com
Sun Jul 31 00:01:24 EDT 2005

Chuck, and others...

i thinking your "amatuer" status is wonderful. its late, and ive had to much 
whisky, (no not bourbon, Percy's choice), but i was excited to see such quick 
responses to my little dead comment. so i thought at least a brief response 
was in order. yes, my interest in Percy  probably fell into the "academic" 
category, but it didnt start that way. I was taken with your comments about what 
the hell to do on a wed. afternoon. In graduate school, i was working hard on 
formulating a theory of the self and using a lot of Peirce. But, what usually 
happened was after reading lots of philosophy and biology, I was always left 
with the existential problem of my self and how the hell to get through the rest 
of the day. A proffessor turned me onto Percy, and I started to realize that 
when i read literature, i learned more about my self then i ever learned from 
reading all my "academic" books. a bit of a revelation, and to add too it, i 
discovered Percy was interested in Peirce, and had tried to sketch out some 
philosophical picture of the self. I was certain i was "on to something." I 
thought if i worked enough of the 2 of them i could give some type of ontological 
picture of the self: one that explained why narrative and language make up what 
a self is. one that explained why reading a novel like the moviegoer actually 
told me more about a self then any philosophy i ever read. well, to make a 
long story short, i really dont think Percy ever really figured that out. I 
certainly couldnt. Reading a lot of Ketner's work on the two thinkers got me close, 
but i still couldnt put it all in philosophical terms. maybe thats 
appropriate! I abandoned my dissertation (which is kind of a shame since it would have 
helped others doing research on the 2). I also said goodbye to academia. I 
havnt read Percy in a few years. And I'm still trying to figure out what the hell 
to do with myself on an ordinary afternoon. I drink way too much. I am an 
incessant "womanizer" now that i am divorced after 12 years of marriage. My 
therapist just told me she cant help me and i need to see someone else. And my 
father just died unexpectedly last week. I wish just picking up a Percy novel would 
be like a magic pill for me right now. But i think that is asking way to much 
of our admired physician/novelist. Well, this is just existential babble. so 
ill end it for now. But I have to say that is nice to see a few Percy messages 
in my email bottle. 

lets keep talking,
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