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The Laughing Man is not J. D. Salinger

Posted by , 04 January 2007 · 1,165 views

The Laughing Man is not J. D. Salinger [0]

"I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes. ... I wouldn't have to have any ...useless conversations ... write it on a piece of paper and shove it over to me. ...and then I'd be through with having conversations... [1] [2] [3] [4]

"You can't ever find a place that's nice and peaceful, because there isn't any. You may think there is, but once you get there, when you're not looking, somebody'll sneak up and write 'Fuck you' right under your nose.". [5]

"You know what I'd like to be? I mean if I had any goddamn choice, I'd just be the catcher in the rye and all," is shown written on a lefty's catcher's mitt. A 'lefty's catcher's mitt' is attributed as "net jargon for something you think is real, when actually it is not"; this picks up on the notion of "Phoniness" evident in The Catcher in the Rye. (ibid) Ironically, while the mitt is actually real, the term "a lefty's catcher mitt" is described as being net jargon for "something people think exists, but really doesn't." [6]

When Togusa comes to investigate the center, he discovers that someone has written the famous Laughing Man logo text in a PBX cabinet but has added "or should I?" The irony being that since everybody uses his icon and name for their own purposes, the original meaning of his actions, an artful forced confession of the truth through fear in the public eye, becomes "phony" itself. (ibid)


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