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review 2019-01-26 05:19
Moby Dick
Moby-Dick (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) - Herman Melville

I don’t mean to disrespect this book or anyone who loves it, but for only the second time in my life I find myself thinking that maybe abridging classics isn’t such a terrible practice after all.

 

At least I came out of it with my love of whales intact.

 

Take it away, Ahab!

“Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.”

You tell ‘em, you crazy bastard.

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text 2019-01-26 04:00
Reading progress update: I've read 656 out of 752 pages.
Moby-Dick (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) - Herman Melville

The story ends here. The rest is endnotes, a dictionary, and other such appendices. I would like to thank insomnia for helping me finish the last 250-ish pages in two nights. I may not retain much of the contents of those pages, also thanks to you, but whatever. I couldn't have done it without you!

 

In possibly related news, I don't think I could have a bigger headache if I had stove in the Pequod's hull with my own forehead.

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text 2019-01-25 10:47
Reading progress update: I've read 521 out of 752 pages.
Moby-Dick (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) - Herman Melville

So! Ishmael once measured a whale skeleton and didn't want to forget the measurements, so he tattooed them on his arm as "there was no other secure way of preserving such valuable statistics" at the time. I already knew this was in the book. What I didn't know was that, though he went to the extreme of permanently inking these "valuable statistics" in his flesh, he didn't even record the exact measurements because he was saving room on his body for a poem he was composing.

 

This may be the funniest, stupidest, navel-gazing-est thing I've ever read and now I'm intensely curious about this poem that trumps exact whale skeleton measurements.

 

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text 2019-01-25 08:53
Reading progress update: I've read 516 out of 752 pages.
Moby-Dick (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) - Herman Melville

Insomnia hit me hard last night. The chapters on the differences between sperm whale heads and right whale heads failed to put me to sleep as I'd hoped and I ended up reading about 100 pages.

 

At one point a minor character went overboard during a whale chase, and that got me thinking about the 1987 movie Overboard and how much I love it and how horrifically messed up it actually is. I mean, a man tells an amnesiac she's his wife, forces her into slavery, emotionally abuses her, and relentlessly gaslights her to keep up the sham. He totally should have gone to prison for kidnapping and possibly rape because, willing or not, there are some serious consent issues here. Then I started thinking about the remake that came out last year (which I haven't seen) and wondering if swapping the genders of the kidnapper and the victim makes it more funny/disturbing or less funny/disturbing.

 

Ladies and gentlemen, my brain on insomnia.

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text 2019-01-19 08:05
Reading progress update: I've read 332 out of 752 pages.
Moby-Dick (Barnes & Noble Classics Series) - Herman Melville

From an entire chapter dedicated to the type of rope used for whaling:

 

[...] but previous to that connection, the short-warp goes through sundry mystifications too tedious to detail.

 

YOU GUYS. Melville finding something too tedious to detail is like THE ULTIMATE BURN. Imagine being so tedious NOT EVEN MELVILLE CAN BE BOTHERED DESCRIBING YOU.

 

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