Thursday 12 July 2007

A tip for athletes

Kim and I have been discussing Samuel Beckett’s novel, Molloy (1951), which I think is one of the funniest novels ever written (I admit it: I love everything by Beckett). Here’s one passage to ponder – it’s nothing to do with theology, but I couldn’t help myself from posting it:

“Perhaps he was afraid I would run after him. And indeed, I think there is something terrifying about the way I run, with my head flung back, my teeth clenched, my elbows bent to the full and my knees nearly hitting me in the face. And I have often caught faster runners than myself thanks to this way of running. They stop and wait for me, rather than prolong such a horrible outburst at their heels.”

—Samuel Beckett, Molloy, in Molloy, Malone Dies, The Unnamable (New York: Everyman’s Library, 1997), pp. 162-63.


Anonymous said...

Biblically, SB's description makes me think of Paul (Philippians 3:13-14). Somehow I don't see the egghead from Tarsus as a great sprint stylist!

Anonymous said...

My friend has a theory that all contemporary athletic disciplines represent a sub-conscious regression to the days of old when invading castles was the thing to do.

Javelin et al are all pretty obvious, steeplechase/moat parallels are just about there.

I mean it may not be watertight, but I've heard worse.


Anonymous said...

Love it. My favourite running description has to be this, from 'The Young Visiters' by Daisy Ashford:

"I shall put some red ruge on my face said Ethel because I am very pale owing to the drains in this house.

You will look very silly said Mr Salteena with a dry laugh.

Well so will you said Ethel in a snappy tone and she ran out of the room with a very superier run throwing out her legs behind and her arms swinging in rithum.

Well said the owner of the house she has a most idiotick run.

Presently Ethel came back in her best hat and a lovly velvit coat of royal blue. Do I look nice in my get up she asked.

Mr Salteena survayed her. You look rarther rash my dear your colors dont quite match your face but never mind I am just going up to say goodbye to Rosalind the housemaid."

Daisy Ashford, The Young Visiters, (Chatto and Windus, reprinted 1984).

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