Ninety-Six: Just as Pig Is Porking

In which we finish discussing chapter one of Thomas Pynchon’s novel, V.


If you’ve wondered what a ’53 MG looked like, here’s one:

Aug mentions the character Swiss Toni, from the Fast Show. Here’s a clip of some of his best moments.

Liam mentioned Joanna Freer’s book, Thomas Pynchon and American Counter Culture: Powells; WorldCat eBook; WorldCat book.

5 thoughts on “Ninety-Six: Just as Pig Is Porking

  1. just listening to the podcast; great as always. I had two thoughts to add to the convo.

    1) I think you are all on the right track about Rachel being inspired by a person in Pynchon’s life, and this mixed with the fact that he is from the NY area and that he was in the Navy leads me to suspect that there is possibly a lot of overt autobiographical elements in the novel, moreso maybe even than any other of his novels (although I guess we can never know that for sure)

    2) Adding to the yo-yo conversation, it seems to me that Rachel is an integral part of the metaphor. From pg 23: “…and though they only thought about one another at random, though her YO-YO HAND was usually busy at other things, now and again would come the invisible, umbilical tug, like tonight mnemonic, arousing, and he would wonder how much his own man he was.”

    I would say based on above that he is described as “up and down the east coast like a yo-yo” suggests his metaphoric attachment to Rachel, and that when she comes to his mind, as she does in the text, it pulls him back to her (like the hand casting out and then pulling back a yo-yo). The chapter title says that he has reached an apocheir, and like with a yo-yo, when he runs out of string or gets to the lowest point (I believe he starts the chapter in Virginia), it’s at this apocheir that he gets pulled back to the hand of the yo-yo. The spot of origin is important to the metaphor.

    I especially think this is important going forward with the Stencil/V stuff as well.

    Thanks for the great show!

  2. Hi! An Argentinian Pynchon fan here. Just recently finished V. for the first time (only Vineland and AtD to go now!) and found your awesome podcast, so I’ll be following your reading of V. 🙂

    I wanted to add some thoughts on the name Da Conho. “Da” is very common in Portuguese or Brazilian surnames (like in other languages “de”, “von”, “van”, etc). so it makes it look Brazilian alright. And Conho would be pronounced “conyo” which sounds just like “coño” in Spanish. Coño is slang for vagina, and it’s also used as an interjection, like shit or fuck. I like to think the latter was what Pynchon had in mind, so this character’s name would end up as a version of “Da Fuck”.

    1. Thanks, Mariano. Glad you’re enjoying the show! I had a notion about what you’re saying, knowing some Spanish as I do, but forgot to mention it in the show. I do think you’re right though.

      Thanks for listening!

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