Arggghhhh. Updated the Digest. Only took me five hours, but that's what I get for getting sick/busy with school and letting the news pile up for three weeks. I wouldn't be so hard on myself except that the name of the damn site is "The Daily Digest." Sigh.
Tired. I feel like an athlete training and resting up, regarding the Oscars. Yes, that's pitiful, but remember that I spent four hours typing nonstop for the Globes--watching both the show and trying to mod the tagboard. The day after the Globes, I mentioned that I wanted to move my computer for the Oscars, and my mother was like, "Shpfff, whatever." Now we've got 50 people in the pool and she's like, "Here's the card table from the cedar closet--do you need a TV tray?"
A bit concerned--this is now the second empty email I've gotten from the Oscar pool submission form. All it has is "subject = Oscar pool" and an IP number logged. I have no idea who it belongs to or how to say, "Hey, I don't think your entry went through." Maybe I'll put up a list on Saturday that says, basically, if your name isn't on it, try again.
Reading The Blithedale Romance again--might do my paper on it. Temple read us a letter that may have inspired the chapter "A Crisis," the part where "Hollingsworth basically asks Coverdale to be his spouse," as Temple put it. Apparently Hawthorne and Melville (who was about 15 years younger but rilly, rilly intense, as I understand it) had a very intense friendship that hit the skids after Melville wrote a letter to Hawthorne regarding Hawthorne's praise of Moby Dick:
"Your letter was handed me last night on the road going to Mr. Morewood's, and I read it there. Had I been at home, I would have sat down at once and answered it. In me divine maganimities are spontaneous and instantaneous -- catch them while you can. The world goes round, and the other side comes up. So now I can't write what I felt. But I felt pantheistic then -- your heart beat in my ribs and mine in yours, and both in God's. A sense of unspeakable security is in me this moment, on account of your having understood the book. I have written a wicked book, and feel spotless as the lamb. Ineffable socialities are in me. I would sit down and dine with you and all the gods in old Rome's Pantheon. It is a strange feeling -- no hopefulness is in it, no despair. Content -- that is it; and irresponsibility; but without licentious inclination. I speak now of my profoundest sense of being, not of an incidental feeling.
"Whence come you, Hawthorne? By what right do you drink from my flagon of life? And when I put it to my lips -- lo, they are yours and not mine. I feel that the Godhead is broken up like the bread at the Supper, and that we are the pieces. Hence this infinite fraternity of feeling. Now, sympathizing with the paper, my angel turns over another page. you did not care a penny for the book. But, now and then as you read, you understood the pervading thought that impelled the book -- and that you praised. Was it not so? You were archangel enough to despise the imperfect body, and embrace the soul. Once you hugged the ugly Socrates because you saw the flame in the mouth, and heard the rushing of the demon, -- the familiar, -- and recognized the sound; for you have heard it in your own solitudes.
"My dear Hawthorne, the atmospheric skepticisms steal into me now, and make me doubtful of my sanity in writing you thus. But, believe me, I am not mad, most noble Festus! But truth is ever incoherent, and when the big hearts strike together, the concussion is a little stunning."
"So, uh, Hawthorne was a little freaked out by this," Temple said. Hello, Captain Understatement! I mean, keep in mind that "My dear Hawthorne" is a completely normal phrase for the period (early 1850s). But also remember that Hawthorne was an intensely private, reserved man who was absorbedly in love with his wife (and she with him). And this wasn't the culmination of a decades-long friendship--the whole thing was barely more than two years long. So the whole your lips are my lips and your heart is in my chest and... yeah.
I'm so tired that I'm not sure I can even sleep at the moment. Hmm. Maybe I'll try to read. Poor Melville.