It is currently Wed Oct 01, 2014 6:19 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




 Page 1 of 2 [ 20 posts ]  Go to page
1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: ATD Question #9 - Vera Rivken
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 10:57 am 
JDZ Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 2:13 pm
Posts: 12436
Location: The Left Coast
Comment on the encounter between Arturo and Vera and its outcome.

NOTE: This is the the last question we will ask before the Thanksgiving holiday. We will resume our ATD discussion on Sunday, November 25. Happy Thanksgiving to all US Zoners.



_________________________________________________________
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 1:10 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 7:37 pm
Posts: 1427
Our boy did not engage in run-of-the-mill encounters! :eyebrow: Vera showed up in his room desperately needy and lonely and, surprise!!, Arturo was gentle and compassionate with her! She already felt demeaned so he didn't have to bother with that. Arturo made her feel serenely happy and ranted at God for causing her so much pain, then felt even angrier at God for causing his pain with Camilla.
He visited Vera with the hope of miraculously gaining courage and desirability with Camilla from the visit. :-? When he found her surroundings to be reminiscent of his prostitute's, he had second thoughts but carried on, with the help of make believe, to make "history." Of course, Arturo's Catholicism left him feeling guilty...to the point of feeling responsible for the earthquake. :-O BUT he vowed to be decent and gentle from then on. I'm not sure if Vera's sobbing and departure were due to happiness or sadness (I opt for happiness :baby: ).
Over all, I felt this episode showed kindness and gentleness on Arturo's part, even though his motives were often self-centered. I don't think he was thinking of Vera as book fodder at that time.
Thanks for the vacation time, Liz! (Off to prepare for company!) Happy Thanksgiving with sincere thanks to all!! :bouquet:



_________________________________________________________
"I never wanted to be remembered for being a star."
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 3:53 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2004 8:15 pm
Posts: 20307
Location: near Omaha
Personally, I found the whole thing too hard to believe. It sounded more like an inadequate guy making up a fantasy....All of the points Betty Sue made are valid..........but I am not sure it took place anywhere other than Arturo's imagination.


Online
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 3:59 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 21, 2004 10:43 pm
Posts: 10376
Location: Austin
Interesting, nebraska! I had not considered that possibility.



_________________________________________________________
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -
Wow! What a ride!
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:24 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 7:37 pm
Posts: 1427
DeppInTheHeartOfTexas wrote:
Interesting, nebraska! I had not considered that possibility.

Me either. It did have a bit of a dream-like quality... :-?



_________________________________________________________
"I never wanted to be remembered for being a star."
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 4:26 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 21, 2006 9:30 am
Posts: 2503
Location: Colorado
Yes, I thought the bit with Vera was a fantasy also. It seemed so out of place with the reality he was living at the time, and her story seemed more than a little unreal. I haven't figured out why he invented this interlude though, other than to show her external scars as being symbolic of his own internal ones. (?)



_________________________________________________________
"Belay that! ...Do something else!" ~ Hector Barbossa
savvy avi by mamabear
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 5:18 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 2:14 pm
Posts: 687
Location: Austin, TX
I agree with what everyone has been saying about this episode being a bit farfetched, but then, aren't they all? I think you were on the right track, Betty Sue, with your idea that Vera was already so hurt and demeaned that Arturo could finally relax (if you can call it that!) and be kind and gentle because he didn't need to put her down any farther. She even insulted his writing right at first, but then quoting Millay poems to him seemed to help raise her status with Arturo. I liked what you said about her external scars and his internal ones, Parlez.

And that he would go to Long Beach after her the very next day? I mean, he had nothing better to do, but I couldn't figure out why so soon - until I remembered that that's the way he does everything: right now, no holds barred, no thinking this through.

This has been a great discussion, everyone. My home computer crashed last Thurs and I have a new one on the way, but it has been very frustrating not to be able to join in at length. I'll be in the boonies for the next few days, so I'm glad we have a break.

A very happy Thanksgiving to every one of you and your loved ones. Safe travels, all. :grouphug:



_________________________________________________________
Live! Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death! ~Auntie Mame
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 6:32 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 21, 2004 10:43 pm
Posts: 10376
Location: Austin
That's pretty sad that Arturo has to feel so superior in order to be himself although he certainly had a role model for that behavior. :-/

Bix, I'm glad you will be reconnected to cypbersapce soon! Enjoy your trip to the boonies!



_________________________________________________________
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -
Wow! What a ride!
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 8:05 pm 
JDZ Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 2:13 pm
Posts: 12436
Location: The Left Coast
Bix wrote:
I liked what you said about her external scars and his internal ones, Parlez.


I liked it too. :cool:

You mean it was all a dream? :-O Shades of Dallas (sorry DITHOT :grin: ). Seriously, I really had not considered the possibility of it being a fantasy. However, he was obviously embellishing certain details of the earthquake, especially his tales of his own heroism. And I agree with Parlez that there was a dreamlike quality to his recounting of the event with Vera. But I would hope that there is a bit of truth to Betty Sue’s theory. :hope:

Bix, glad to hear you will be getting a new computer soon. :bounce: We wouldn’t want you to be denied too long.



_________________________________________________________
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 8:45 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2006 9:28 pm
Posts: 3907
Location: Florida
Nebraska and Parlez commented that this part seemed more like a fantasy. I didn't think it was in his mind when I read it, but everything to Arturo is really in his mind even when he is present. Both he and Vera, were searching for love in different ways. Arturo wanted Camilla to see him as a man of the world with the ladies (so needed some experience) and Vera wanted something real to re-live in her dreams. Arturo also felt that he had been foolish to let her leave his apartment since she gave him an open invitation for sex. He had imagined taking her up on her offer for two days before he arrived to repair his foolish previous behavior.
The harsh realism of the situation caused them both to want to go back into their fantasy so they openly created the fantasy they wanted.


Last edited by gemini on Tue Nov 20, 2007 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.


_________________________________________________________
"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." Will Rogers

Growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional.
Offline
 Profile WWW  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 8:58 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 21, 2006 9:30 am
Posts: 2503
Location: Colorado
Okay, after giving this a little more thought, I'll revise my statement thusly: this part of the story may not be a fantasy, but it's like a fantasy. It's like a whole different story from the one the author was telling initially...as if he wrote it at a different time or place.
But, life works in that sort of unbelievable-fantasy way sometimes. We're going along in our troubled little worlds and mindsets and all of a sudden someone comes out of the blue and appears before us like an angel and everything changes. (We all know what that's like, right?! :lol: )
Vera was like that for Arturo...she showed up almost like in a dream, with a completely different agenda and with a completely different approach to meeting her crippling emotional needs. Naturally, she brought out responses from him that were likewise new and different.
I think she was a real catalyst for Arturo in some deep way ~ she helped him change for the better. But because their encounter was so brief, one might wonder if it had happened at all or if it/she was just the product of Arturo's imagination. Hence there's an element of fantasy about it/her.



_________________________________________________________
"Belay that! ...Do something else!" ~ Hector Barbossa
savvy avi by mamabear
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 9:26 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2006 9:28 pm
Posts: 3907
Location: Florida
Parlez wrote:
Okay, after giving this a little more thought, I'll revise my statement thusly: this part of the story may not be a fantasy, but it's like a fantasy. It's like a whole different story from the one the author was telling initially...as if he wrote it at a different time or place.
But, life works in that sort of unbelievable-fantasy way sometimes. We're going along in our troubled little worlds and mindsets and all of a sudden someone comes out of the blue and appears before us like an angel and everything changes. (We all know what that's like, right?! :lol: )
Vera was like that for Arturo...she showed up almost like in a dream, with a completely different agenda and with a completely different approach to meeting her crippling emotional needs. Naturally, she brought out responses from him that were likewise new and different.
I think she was a real catalyst for Arturo in some deep way ~ she helped him change for the better. But because their encounter was so brief, one might wonder if it had happened at all or if it/she was just the product of Arturo's imagination. Hence there's an element of fantasy about it/her.

Lets face it Parlez you are not wrong when you think of Arturo. Sometimes I feel like he lives his life in his mind searching for his next story and is totally disillusioned that his real life does not live up to his fantasy life.



_________________________________________________________
"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." Will Rogers

Growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional.
Offline
 Profile WWW  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 11:02 am 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 21, 2004 10:43 pm
Posts: 10376
Location: Austin
I agree with the idea that they were there to meet each others needs...shades of Svevo and Hildegarde? While they both may have felt the encounter was something it wasn't, I do think it was real on some level.
Very interesting answers all around!!!
:cool:



_________________________________________________________
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -
Wow! What a ride!
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:01 pm 
JDZ Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 2:13 pm
Posts: 12436
Location: The Left Coast
gemini wrote:
Parlez wrote:
Okay, after giving this a little more thought, I'll revise my statement thusly: this part of the story may not be a fantasy, but it's like a fantasy. It's like a whole different story from the one the author was telling initially...as if he wrote it at a different time or place.
But, life works in that sort of unbelievable-fantasy way sometimes. We're going along in our troubled little worlds and mindsets and all of a sudden someone comes out of the blue and appears before us like an angel and everything changes. (We all know what that's like, right?! :lol: )
Vera was like that for Arturo...she showed up almost like in a dream, with a completely different agenda and with a completely different approach to meeting her crippling emotional needs. Naturally, she brought out responses from him that were likewise new and different.
I think she was a real catalyst for Arturo in some deep way ~ she helped him change for the better. But because their encounter was so brief, one might wonder if it had happened at all or if it/she was just the product of Arturo's imagination. Hence there's an element of fantasy about it/her.

Lets face it Parlez you are not wrong when you think of Arturo. Sometimes I feel like he lives his life in his mind searching for his next story and is totally disillusioned that his real life does not live up to his fantasy life.


You've pegged him well, Gemini. I would agree.



_________________________________________________________
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2007 6:31 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2004 1:57 pm
Posts: 1381
Location: uk
I have been scratching my head over this one – and still am. So, sorry about my incoherent ramblings.

At first it struck me that Vera was another of those plot devices Fante seems to favour – this time most definitely wildly improbable and forced – to extricate Arturo out of the difficulty in which he finds himself. Perhaps it is his fantasy. At any rate, it is “fantastic” and “incomprehensible” to me.

This woman, who lacks confidence as a desirable woman, approaches a man much younger than herself?

Why the attack on his writing? Perhaps it is compensation for her lack of confidence as said desirable woman. Perhaps she knows what she is talking about. I agree with the comment about quoting Millay, which may create that impression for Arturo. Why Millay? is one of about a gazillion questions I have. I looked her up and found she was noted for among other things, her sexual openness and activities. Perhaps she is an aspirational role model, then. Also, interestingly, she “preferred to be called "Vincent" rather than Edna, which she found plain — her grade school principal, offended by her frank attitudes, refused to call her Vincent — instead, he called her by any woman's name that started with a V.”. OK, it’s from Wikipedia, but all the same…

So anyway, our Arturo takes the criticism like the meek little lamb he is. Hmm. And is ultra polite and sensitive besides. No wonder if he is scared.

These two seem to be rather alike. I like the comment about her physical and his emotional scars. They have similar needs. The timing of her arrival is interesting, immediately after he has gone and sat in Camilla’s car waiting for her. She comments on his writing in the same way he does. One minute she’s slating it but then he’s a “genius” and “so talented”. He does that to himself quite often. They both reference writers. They both indulge in uncontrolled actions and then there is the fantasing for the sex. Two of a kind in some ways – his alter ego?

What’s with the odour? “the very peculiar but distinctive odour of decay, sweetish and cloying…” Charming. That smell that impregnates everything. The way he describes it suggests death to me, which would link with the comment about her flesh. That I think is important.

I underlined this: ‘Say, what is this anyway?… Does it matter? You are nobody, and I might have been somebody, and the road to each of us is love’. Also, the comment about her being in an “inferno of her own creation”, because I think in this book, they all are.

So, onto the sex. What is it with Bandini men and sobbing women? Yet again, when it comes to a sexual situation, communication breaks down”But where were all the words?” I suppose that is because the sex is meaningless. It isn’t intimacy at all. I found it very sad that he tells hmself to find his passion “the way it says in the books”. I hated the leaving of the money.

The reflection afterwards :
Quote:
Passing people who seemed strange and ghostly: the world seemed a myth, a transparent plane, and all things upon it were here for only a little while: all of us, Bandini, and Hacmuth and Camilla and Vera, all of us were here for a little while, and then we were somewhere else; we were not alive at all; we approached living, but we never achieved it.”

I think that is what the fog is about. You asked in an earlier question about the setting, and I have been wondering about the fog ever since.

And then there is this: “there shall be consolation, and there shall be beauty like the love of some dead girl”. I am sure I read a comment where he states he doesn't in fact love Camilla at all, but some other girl. I can't find it now. All I can find is the account of his love for the woman where he eats her cigarette butt (which I do think is complete make believe for Vera, but with Arturo, who knows?)

And what about that earthquake? (Did the earth move for you too, darling?) Sorry, naughty suec. Far too serious for such flippancy. That bed resembling a man crucified kind of stands out. :yuck2:

Edit: I was struggling with this post last night and that is possibly because the episode is allegorical.



_________________________________________________________
"Luck... inspiration... both only really happen to you when you empty your heart of ambition, purpose, and plan; when you give yourself, completely, to the golden, fate-filled moment."
Offline
 Profile  
 
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
 Page 1 of 2 [ 20 posts ]  Go to page
1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  


phpBB skin developed by: John Olson
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group