It takes a monster ego to write a memoir this late in the game,
yet I’ve already produced a trilogy of metamemoir. Now here’s a
fourth volume, in the tradition of the Greeks—after three
tragedies, you’d get a satyr play, “rife with mock drunkenness,
brazen sexuality (including phallic props), pranks, sight gags, and
And the question is: Who do I think I am?
Actually, I’d like to rephrase that: What do I think I is?
I think it may be the only word that could possibly serve as the
sole word of a book. Better than that, it’s the only letter with such
I is the letter most like the portrait of a human being: upright,
relatively slim, pretty much of a piece. (I suppose M is the letter
most like a landscape.)
I has enough character to stand on its own, whether shaped like
an eponymous I-beam (with serifs, those little wings) or as a slab
(sans serif ).
This, then, is a typographic novel, populated by 61 serifs (is
seraphim related?) and 34 sans serifs. My iNovel.
It is deeply impersonal. Abstract to the point where you’d think
I was joking if I suggested its plot is minimal. I mean, duh, it’s
all first person singular pronouns, zero verbs, so how could there
possibly be any action?
You might think you’ve seen one I, you’ve seen them all. But
that, of course, is my challenge: to articulate these singularities.