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Saturday, September 13, 2008

David Foster Wallace

posted by on September 13 at 19:47 PM


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(insert stupid joke about how he killed himself because he was frustrated at not being able to get through reading all of Infinite Jest.)

Posted by stinkbug | September 13, 2008 7:52 PM

Dan Savage -brave warrior Oct. 2002

War may be bad for children and other living things, but there are times when peace is worse for children and other living things, and this is one of those times. Saying no to war in Iraq means saying yes to the continued oppression of the Iraqi people.

In the meantime, invading and rebuilding Iraq will not only free the Iraqi people, it will also make the Saudis aware of the consequences they face if they continue to oppress their own people while exporting terrorism and terrorists. The War on Iraq will make it clear to our friends and enemies in the Middle East (and elsewhere) that we mean business: Free your people, reform your societies, liberalize, and democratize... or we're going to come over there, remove you from power, free your people, and reform your societies for ourselves.

Posted by Kill the children it's for their own good | September 13, 2008 8:13 PM

DFW, you'll be missed.

Posted by Lincolnish | September 13, 2008 8:59 PM

This is really an unpleasant and sad surprise. He was so young. I really loved his work. RIP.

Posted by pffft | September 13, 2008 9:23 PM

Re-title that: Finite Jest.

Posted by John Bailo | September 13, 2008 9:40 PM

Wow - I didn't see that coming at all. I was just re-reading his piece about traveling with McCain 8 years ago.

Posted by unred | September 13, 2008 9:44 PM


You saved a thousand lives with that massive tome of yours, including mine.

Posted by Ryan | September 13, 2008 9:56 PM

That is really fucked up.
That makes me very sad.

Posted by Lorenzo | September 13, 2008 10:40 PM

Ghastly. His brain was an amazing,
restless writing machine. He played some nice smooth basketball.

Posted by Stacey | September 13, 2008 10:55 PM

I know it's more complex than this, but what does it mean when people who have accomplished so much decide it's not enough to live for? What is enough to live for? It's not like he was known for being suicidally depressed, was he?

Posted by whatevernevermind | September 13, 2008 11:15 PM

I'm so bummed.

Posted by STJA | September 13, 2008 11:37 PM

no no no no no no no no no no.

Do not want.

Posted by monty | September 13, 2008 11:48 PM

@10: DFW struggled with depression and was suicidal while at Amherst.

I hope The Stranger (or SLOG) eventually does something more than link to his obit. DFW was a giant.

Posted by Ryan | September 13, 2008 11:54 PM


Posted by Hannah | September 13, 2008 11:58 PM


Posted by Sean | September 13, 2008 11:58 PM

You are able to write so brilliantly, you touch the hearts and minds of people all over the world, you hang yourself before your wife gets home. You have dumbfounded me yet again, DFW. I really wanted to keep reading your work as I grew old.

Posted by bazz | September 14, 2008 12:01 AM

Oh, no.

Posted by superfrankenstein | September 14, 2008 12:12 AM

I found the text of his commencement speech at Kenyon online as I was reading about his death, I think it is lovely and profound and sadly prophetic so I am sharing the link here:

Posted by PopTart | September 14, 2008 12:14 AM

Insert too-soon joke about his excessively footnoted 600-page, three-sentence suicide note.

Seriously, this really struck me in a way I never would've expected it to. There was a story in "Oblivion" about a man's eventual decision to commit suicide (supposedly inspired by a classmate of his) that was so detailed and pensive that it makes me now wonder how much of it was really about himself.

Posted by tsm | September 14, 2008 12:47 AM

Charles Mudede broke this news to me this evening, in the lobby of the Moore Theatre.

I don't know what was more surreal -- the actual fact, or Mudede's maniacal laugh that accompanied the disturbing news.

RIP to one of the best modern American authors.

Posted by kerri harrop | September 14, 2008 1:38 AM

truly depressing. i do not know what to think or say or do.

Posted by ann kittenplan | September 14, 2008 2:19 AM

After a particularly terrible breakup, I read Broom Of The System three times in a row. It made me believe in myself, writing, and the world again. Thank you for that, Mr. Wallace, you will indeed be missed.

Posted by mookie | September 14, 2008 6:24 AM

I thought he looked like a huge asshole in that white bandana on the back of infinite jest. But damn I loved that book.

Posted by skweetis | September 14, 2008 6:31 AM

Thank you for that link Pop Tart @ 18. That was about the best speech ever.

Posted by homage to me | September 14, 2008 8:21 AM

I realize he's best known for Infinite Jest, but A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again remains one of my favorite collections ever and is what introduced me to this brilliant author. This is as sad as Heath Ledger's untimely death.

Posted by Kaz | September 14, 2008 10:15 AM

I couldn't read his fiction, but his essays were outstanding. What a terribly sad thing. No, Kaz, writers are much bigger losses than actors, and suicides are the worst of all.

Please, people, if you're thinking about it, call someone. Call anyone.

Posted by Fnarf | September 14, 2008 10:32 AM

Oh man, oh man. What now?

Posted by Grant Cogswell | September 14, 2008 11:43 AM

Question: Is anyone at The Stranger working on something a little more comprehensive than a link to his obit? Surely somebody on staff has something to actually say about this, right?

Posted by Ryan | September 14, 2008 12:14 PM

Charles Mudede broke this news to me this evening, in the lobby of the Moore Theatre.

I don't know what was more surreal -- the actual fact, or Mudede's maniacal laugh that accompanied the disturbing news.

...CHRIST what an ASSHOLE.

Posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me | September 14, 2008 3:48 PM

@19 - All I can think about is that suicide note.
For a person who has seemingly taken in the most banal and foolish elements of our modern lives (en masse) and spun them into a diamond mirror for us to consider - how could it have gotten to him? He seemed impervious, exuberant, and driven. Maybe even maniacal. What could bring him down? What is in that note?

And what, pray tell, could Charles Mudede have to say for himself? Fucker is always walking a thin line.

Posted by jnonymous | September 14, 2008 10:16 PM

By boyfriend called me last night to inform me of this. The rest of my Sunday was ruined. RIP DFW. You made me laugh out loud, which is difficult to do. Fnarf is right for once; your fiction is a chore, but your essays soar. Hope you found peace.

Posted by Gidget | September 15, 2008 9:56 AM

That sucks. I guess he wasn't a Cubs fan.

Posted by nightlifejitters | September 15, 2008 6:33 PM

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