I love Elif Batuman

Have you read The Possessed yet? No? Silly goose.

Her essay in The Guardian upon the release of her book in the UK:

So it’s difficult to articulate what possessed me, at a later, boozier point in the dinner, to ask Franzen whether he had any weed. In part, I was curious whether he had any. And in part, despite severe fatigue and a mild constitutional dislike of weed, I felt somehow unable not to pursue momentary contact with a half-glimpsed parallel world in which the evening continued in this really different, really mellow way.”Wheat?” Franzen’s agent repeated, frowning. “Why would you need wheat?”

“Not wheat – weed.”

She stared at me blankly.

Weed,” my agent repeated.

“There’s some in my freezer,” Franzen said. “But it’s all the way uptown.”

The night began to unwind with increasing rapidity, like a spool of thread.

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