I don't get David Foster Wallace. I know people who really like his books, but they are clearly not me. I read The Broom of the System: A Novel(Penguin Ink)for a friend who wanted to know what happened to the great-grandmother, who as far as I can tell snuck into the phone tunnel for no reason except it made a cute ending scene. Wallace has a good way with words,but at anything higher than a sentence level the book seemed completely flat. All his characters have little consistency, with the personality needed for a cute scene but that morphs when Wallace wants to do a different cute scene. Jokes replace motivations, quirks are supposed to be major themes, but they aren't. Even the cockatiel doesn't ring true. This challenge give me the push to finish the book, which I found really dull, because nothing mattered.
Sorry, Aunt Bug! I tried. The great-grandmother doesn't get found because Wallace never thought of his characters as people, only as props to make funny jokes with. He couldn't think of any more jokes using the grandmother theme, so he never picked up her puppet stick at the end.
And now it is time for a long delayed shower and peek at the caged children.