By Jim Oaten
Dodging down back-alleys in bomb-torn Beirut. Wheeling previous God and site visitors in Mombassa, Kenya. Slipping round the edges of Alzheime's sickness, the Gulf warfare, and the eternity of CNN.
Set someplace among right here and the heat-death of the universe, Jim Oaten's debut assortment serves up random samples of literal and literary fact scooped up at best velocity. even if peeking out from the backseat of mother and Dad's motor vehicle or surveying the dirty wings of psychological wards, Accelerated Paces hurdles that uneasy terrain among artistic truth and sincere fiction. those brief tales and items forget about borders as they jaunt thorough exterior journeys and inner voyages.
This is either inventive non-fiction and artistic fiction, which follows the assumption of crossing obstacles and blurring borders. This assortment is an specific demonstration of ways the 2 genres interaction, of the way a non-fiction occasion can motivate a fictional piece, and, curiously sufficient, the opposite as well.
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Additional info for Accelerated Paces. Travels Across Borders and Other Imaginary Boundaries
The problem is that when I conjure up this small misadventure, what I see is me. There I am—fat, happy, slightly bruised—lying on a blanket in the middle of a ping-pong table. Somehow someone’s yarn stuck and became my own story. Still, this is my first memory, all of it, both on the table and looking back at myself. I swear it’s true. I can see it, right there, right behind my eyes. It’s as clear as the year I was born. My mother’s still alive, still hanging in there close to ten years after “Penumbra” was first published.
And so on… until you’re poured off the plane at the other end of the world, with a roiling stomach and a desperate head, and stern officials demand incomprehensible things from you in accents you can barely understand: —You must pee first. —Pardon? —Pee. Then you can go in. —Umm … but I went on the plane … a bunch of times. —What? —On the plane. I peed. Lots of times. —No, pee here, not on plane. Pee first to get stamp. —Oh, pay! Pay for the visa stamp. Ha! Do I pay you? —No. Pee other line. There you are with no wits about you when you need them most, and only yourself to blame, and yet in the back of your head you still think you’ve done the right thing because you’ve taken the only rational path and self-medicated to escape the nightmare at 35,000 feet that brought to you to this surreal crossroad in the first place.
I decide to try to at least get her attention. “Hey Flo,” I say, “tune in, would ya. ” It’s Rose, our interpersonal trainer. ” Flo’s eyes are starting to focus. “When you use sarcasm, it makes me feel insulted, so please trynottodo…uh…it anymore,” says Rose. “Try ‘derision’ or maybe ‘ridicule’,” I suggest with a helpful smile. ” “As a synonym for ‘sarcasm’. ” Rose’s glasses flash danger, catching the light as she leans towards me. Obviously, I haven’t given the right response. She looks at me expectantly for a few seconds, wipes her glasses for dramatic effect, then digs into a long lecture about the need for consideration and the importance of others’ feelings.
Accelerated Paces. Travels Across Borders and Other Imaginary Boundaries by Jim Oaten