Friday, January 27, 2012
On The Road: The Original Roll
I just - at 4:00 PM on January 27, 2012 - finished reading On The Road: The Original Scroll by Jack Kerouac (Christmas present from my son, Jason). This is the umpteenth time I've read On The Road, and I have to say that I enjoyed the Hell out of this version. It is funnier, sexier, and uses the actual names of the characters so that you don't need a reference guide to figure out who Kerouac is talking about.
Now, here is something you need to know as a Kerouac fan. I learned from Gerry Nicosia, a renowned and legitimate Kerouac scholar (versus a Kerouhack like me), that Jack referred to his famous 120-foot long creation typed in a caffeine-fueled frenzy during 3 weeks in 1951 as "the roll." Gerry says calling it "the scroll" was advertising hype. Jack's calling it "the roll" is supported by this page on DHARMA beat, a comprehensive Jack Kerouac website you should visit if you haven't already done so.
If you haven't read "the roll" version of On The Road, I recommend it. It doesn't supplant the version published by Viking in 1957. Rather, it augments it and gives us another look into the brilliance that was Jack Kerouac.