ablutions-patrick dewitt

“She is fifty-six, with brittle, overdyed burgandy hair and orange lipstick and many sad tattoos whose meanings she hopes to share with you. She is a friendly person but has a greedy little girl’s heart and her eyes grow narrow as she drinks and she looks at you as if you were the last piece of cake at a party.” (73)

“And you know that it is wrong, your coveting her only after she has left, and that if you were back together you would only return to ignoring her, and you think of what a tricky thing your heart is, and wonder for the first time if perhaps you have been against yourself all this while?” (145)

“The note is not signed and the love in your heart is gone. It feels as if it was never there at all.” (17)

this book is about a terrible bartender in a terrible bar, and i mostly pulled passages about love-go figure. but i’ve always been attracted to that damage love at its basest level, shining bright and buried deep under layers and layers of standoffish assholic protectionist antics.

“What she does not know is that at another time, in another neighborhood, and hidden from another woman, you kept aspirin in the glove compartment of your magical car. Once you hid your aspirin in a shoebox, once in an acoustic guitar. You have always hidden your aspirin from some nosy woman who thought to come to the aid of your defenseless organs. When the woman went away you would move your aspirin into your bathroom cupboard and gobble them freely and without fear of reprimand, but sooner or later a new woman would arrive and declare your lifestyle unhealthy and you would be forced once more to hid the bottle. This routine only brings you closer to your aspirin and you come to adore them in a star-crossed-lovers type of way. It is a doomed affair and will end in misery and death.” (24-5)

“He is full of mystery and a looming evil but the strangest thing about Raymond is his choice of shoes.” (33)

“Although it is part of your job description to suppress any violence until security arrives, you do not intervene in Joe’s tantrums because you have become truly afraid of his eyes and you believe it is only a matter of time before he kills someone, and you do not want to die at the bar, at the hands of a man in flip-flops and a Senor Frog’s poncho.” (47-8)

i figure that this is the right time to bring this one out, as i bought it last year at word on the street because it was the first one, the frank to his sisters brothers. i finally read it almost a year later, and three months after that, here we are, since the third book is now out and already on hold.

i also recently watched the grand budapest hotel, which he cited as the comparison that he sees being made to the most recent one, and i have to say that that looks like wes anderson‘s style and ensemble cast is coming together quite organically and his camera angles and cinematography are top notch.

i am also reading (and slightly terrified of) roald dahl‘s adult stories on patrick dewitt‘s recommendation. thank you, (mostly).


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