In which we interview the man behind the wonderful blog Thomas Pynchon’s Liquor Cabinet. Michael has embarked upon a noble quest to drink every alcoholic beverage mentioned all of Thomas Pynchon’s novels. Chris and Bo decide to help him along by partaking in a particularly interesting trio of drinks. Which ones? You’ll have to listen to find out!
A final capstone discussion of The Crying of Lot 49.
In which we say everything there’s left to say…or at least we say a lot. Some of it may even bring some meaning to the text as a whole. Some of it might just wander around San Narciso all night pointing continually to itself. You’ll just have to listen to find out.
And if you stick around to the end, there’s the first-ever Pynchon in Public Podcast Trivia Segment!
In which we discuss the final chapter of The Crying of Lot 49.
Oedipa, with the help of a Warfinger scholar, digs into the history of the Trystero. As the people and things in her life gradually fall away, she finds herself in a fugue. The last bit of her former lover, Pierce, who set her upon this quest, goes up for auction. It is there that she faces the crying of lot 49.
In which we wrap up chapter five of The Crying of Lot 49.
After a night spent wandering the streets of San Narciso and seeing the post-horn at nearly every turn, Oedipa encounters an old sailor who asks her to drop a letter into W.A.S.T.E. for him. She tails a deliveryman for a while, and then heads back to Kinneret…where things are certainly in a much different state than when she left.
In which we talk about the first half of Chapter 5 of The Crying of Lot 49.
Chapter 5 begins with Oedipa visiting John Nefastis and his homemade Maxwell’s Demon device. Afterward, she begins a night of peregrination, wandering from place to place, point to point, the muted post-horn always seeming to follow – or perhaps precede – her.
Addressing chapter four of The Crying of Lot 49 with a brand-new panelist. Welcome, Blake!
Chapter 4 finds Oedipa first at a stockholders’ meeting of Yoyodyne, after which she finds a young man seemingly hip to the W.A.S.T.E. system. In a code-heavy conversation, he mentions the last of the true inventors, John Nefastis, who created a real, live Maxwell’s Demon that will work with the aid of a psychic sensitive. Later, she finds an edition of The Courier’s Tragedy with notably differing text, uncover a bit more about the Tristero’s possible involvement in early American postal services, and talk to eminent philatelist Genghis Cohen.
In which we continue our analysis of The Crying of Lot 49…with our analysis of The Courier’s Tragedy.
The Courier’s Tragedy is a Pynchon-invented play within the novel modeled on the revenge tragedies of seventeenth century England. It’s wildly violent and hugely entertaining…but what’s the point? How might it work within the novel? And what of Oepida’s encounter with the play’s director? We might just have some answers for you; then again, we might just have more questions.
Liam mentions: On Endings: American Postmodern Fiction and the Cold War, Daniel Grausem
Bo reads from: Charnes, Linda. “revenge tragedy.” The Oxford Encyclopedia of Theatre and Performance. : Oxford University Press, 2003. Oxford Reference. 2005. Date Accessed 2 May. 2015
In which we continue our analysis of The Crying of Lot 49.
Oedipa gets something of a curious letter and, later, visits a bar frequented by Yoyodyne employees. In a restroom stall she’ll discover a curious symbol – easily the most recognizable of Pynchon’s symbols. She’ll be told about the W.A.S.T.E. mail system and a little history of mail systems in the United States. She, Metzger, and the Paranoids will travel out to Lake Inverarity where they’ll meet Manny DiPresso. From him they’ll learn of the bones in the lake and of a play being put on by a local theater troupe called The Courier’s Tragedy…
…which we’ll have to save for the next episode because it’s already too much!
In which we move on to chapter 2 of The Crying of Lot 49.
Oedipa heads to San Narciso to begin her executing Inverarity’s will, runs into a not-quite-British-Invasion band called the Paranoids, and has something of a remarkable tryst with a actor-turned-lawyer named Metzger. If you’re not sure what to make of all this, tune in an let our esteemed panelists walk you through some of the seedier thruways and darker intersections.
Just whatever you do, don’t lose your head.
Get it here.
In which we kick-off Season Three with chapter one of Thomas Pynchon’s The Crying of Lot 49…and with two new panelists!
Get it here.
Grant, J. Kerry, A Companion to The Crying of Lot 49. Athens : University of Georgia Press, 2008. Print.
Hurley, Patrick. Pynchon Character Names: A Dictionary. Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland & Co, 2008. Print.