Odyssey Funmaries…THIS FRIDAY!

By JERRY GRIT

Ben Vore and I are hard at work practicing our body slams and drilling our analytical skills, to get ready for our countdown to Bloomsday…The Tag-Team Odyssey Funmaries! Super fun summaries of each of Odyssey’s 18 books Joyce uses to structure Ulysses…culminating in day 1 of our reading of Ulysses, when we read page 1 on June 16th, Bloomsday (we’re starting slow, so no worries).

Ben Vore and I look like this! 

Picture 27The Dynamic Dudes: Johnny Aces and Shane Douglas (WCW)

We’ll begin posting Funmaries THIS FRIDAY. We’ll focus on only those 18 books (and the events therein) that Joyce uses to structure Ulysses (not all 24 books of the Odyssey). And we’ll post them in the order in which they appear in the Odyssey, not the order they occur in Ulysses, for the sake of those reading along. Joyce loosely uses the events in the Odyssey to structure his book, and he also plays it pretty loose with their order. For example, “Nausicaa” should come in 5th, after “Calypso”…but in Ulysses, it happens 13th.

Head spinning? Splash some cold water on your face!

If you have a chance to read the Odyssey before we begin Ulysses on June 16th, I strongly recommend you read along with us. Knowing the Odyssey won’t leave you completely clueless during the Ulysses, but it will deepen your experience. It helps to come to Ulysses with some outside knowledge, and the Odyssey is a key “knowledge piece.” 

For those following the stomach ache-inducing Eastern Conference Finals, think of it as a coping strategy. Here’s to Hedo Turkoglu getting a charybdis in his eye!

Odyssey Funmaries Begin THIS FRIDAY, May 28th!

We Read Page 1 of Ulysses on Tuesday, June 16th!

Brace Yourself for Rad Awesometimes!

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12 Responses

  1. Can you recommend a good translation of the Odyssey? I hate reading translations when it’s possible to read the original (like people who “translate” Chaucer *shudder*) but I’m very aware of bad translations… Any suggestions?

  2. I am baffled as to what’s going on in the Eastern Conference Final (which, it should be said, is seriously impairing my Odyssey prep — get ready for my installments to be “unfunmaries”).

    I would nominate Rafer Alston getting the charybdis in his eye. Hedo should simply be turned into swine.

  3. gflawrence–

    There’s a lot to be said for the poetry of the Fitzgerald translation. But we’re going to read the Fagles edition, which is the latest major translation to come out. I’m finding it’s more readable than Fitzgerald, but lacks some of the poetry.

    voreblog–

    I’m finding the troubles on Ithaca are offering a nice respite from (and even a few parallels to) what happened in Orlando. God bless Mo Williams for realizing someone else is going to have to play if the Cavs want to win. But you would hope some more of the team might lend a freaking hand. Where’s the Ben Wallace of yesteryear?

  4. what a load of crap.

    i thought they were starting on thursday.
    not sure i can take the funmaries tease.
    that’s not fun.
    that’s just mean.

  5. That’s on me, Miss James. I did the math wrong. If we start on Thursday, I realized that we’d end on June 14th…2 days before we begin Ulysses. I fear we could lose all our momentum if we leave the 15th open. I want us to go into Ulysses like a charging lion, not a squeaky cat.

    Admittedly, this leaves us no room for failure. Ben and I will be walking a tight rope. If we slack once, it will all fall apart.

    Thus increasing the the dramatic tension for our readers! Not only will you get an entertaining summation of a foundational work of Western Culture, but you’ll also get see if we completely unravel due to our own self-imposed insane production schedule!

  6. Fair warning: I’ve outsourced two of my fun/unfunmaries to highly intelligent monkeys who labor in my basement. They sure stitch clothes well, so I’m optimistic about their critical assessment of epic poetry!

  7. So what are we looking to have read by Friday? Book II, A Hero’s Son Awakens?

  8. Book 2 is good. But I recommend reading ahead as much as you can. Once we get started on these things, we’re not stopping. It’ll be good for you to have a solid head start. We’ll be fast, and we’ll be unrelenting. Unless we completely flame out.

  9. […] About Wandering Rocks ← Odyssey Funmaries….THIS FRIDAY! […]

  10. I’ve been reading the Fitzgerald trans. which is the one I have had for years. I agree it is a little more poetic than Fagles. (Fagles’ translation got a little product placement as the one used in the flim version of Bernhard Schlink’s The Reader; Schlink’s Homecoming, which came out last year, leans even heavier on The Odyssey. The Germans love Homer. In fact, they made him up in the 19th Century…)
    Since I work in a bookstore and have access to such things, I also picked up Simon Armitage’s ‘dramatization’ of The Odyssey. Stripped down to just dialogue (and ironic, knowing dialogue at that; one of the Greeks compares Telemachus to Hamlet) it is a quick way to get familiar with the story. Although I guess he does take some liberties.

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