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A detail from an unwritten novel


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Should I ever write a novel of contemporary life in the U.S. (a possibility asymptotically approaching zero with age and a growing sense of limits) I would include a scene in a book store, or at a book stand, or maybe along the stacks of a library. Somewhere where actual dead-tree books are found collected.

In this scene, the protagonist would survey a number of the titles on a best sellers' shelf, and think sardonic thoughts about why these books had been successful.

There would be one called " 'The Laxative Diet,' which recommends what that title would suggest it recommends."

Its very existence would lead our protagonist to reflect, "Earlier centuries had the good fortune to be bloated, if at all, with fat."  And then his eyes would pass along to the next book.

So now you're probably glad this book will remain unwritten, eh?

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