ASFTINDA is a book by David Foster Wallace (DFW), an author I’d never heard of till last year. It would’ve been my loss if I had remained ignorant of him because he’s a brilliant writer. Lucky then that my friend sent me a copy of ASFTINDA from the US.
ASFTINDA is not a new book, it was published a while back, 1997 or 1998 in fact. What it is is a bunch of essays about topics like tennis and tornadoes (one topic), a state fair in Illinois, a trip on a cruise ship, an essay about television, and about David Lynch’s movies.
What’s common to all these topics other than DFW is that he makes them all interesting and funny. It takes a little while to get used to his style but once you get the drift, it’s an enjoyable ride and sometimes you don’t want the essays to end.
DFW’s use of footnotes is creative. He uses them liberally and sometimes the footnotes are longer than the text on the page but you’ll find yourself reading the stuff anyway.
And the best part is that you don’t really have to be familiar with the topic to enjoy the essay. For instance, I’ve never seen any movies made by David Lynch, but I enjoyed the essay written about him. That’s the genius of David Foster Wallace.
Some people just have a gift.
Edited about two hours later just to turn on comments. No idea why they were turned off.