Saturday, March 2, 2019

Today we begin anew: 2nd sentence of the 2nd book

Happy March, everyone.

In order to have something to write about here on The Daily Beat, given that we've posted something related to Jack Kerouac over 1,660 times since 2008, I look for "projects." To me a project is something that has a beginning, an ending, and some coherent structure in between. So far in the recent past we have undertaken several projects. One was to curate all the items on my Kerouac bookshelf. Another was to summarize The Dharma Bums one chapter at a time in one sentence. There were others. I'll leave it to you to visit the blog archives and figure out what I am talking about.

My latest project idea is related to the day of the month. I intend to find the book on my Kerouac bookshelf that correlates with the date, find the correlative sentence in that book, and then post it. To wit, today I am posting the 2nd sentence from the second book on my shelf. Tomorrow -- if I post -- I will post the 3rd sentence from the 3rd book on my bookshelf. Given that I may take days off, I will come back around to any dates I miss so that by the end of the project we will have 31 entries -- the number of days in March, the month in which I began. To be clear, I will be posting the relevant sentence from the book's actual authorial content, not prefatory matter like introductions of novels, etc. If it's a poem, I will have to make an editorial decision about what constitutes the relevant sentence (maybe the relevant line, or relevant stanza).

This won't take much brain power, but I will have to be able to count to 31 eventually, and at my advanced age that is an accomplishment. I don't intend to comment on excerpts, but may on occasion add my two cents.

Why, you ask, am I focusing on the date so? Because it is a number, and numbers mean things. I can't wait to get to the 23rd sentence of the 23rd book. That will be mystical!

Without further ado, since it is March 2nd (I'll have to catch March 1st later), below is the 2nd sentence from the 2nd book on my Kerouac bookshelf. The book is Atop an Underwood: Early Stories and Other Writings by Jack Kerouac (Penguin Books, 1999).
Shortly before my birth my father had begun a small theatrical publication known as the "Spotlight Print," a unique weekly filled with news, comments, anecdotes, editorials, and advertisements dealing with the theatre [sic] and cinema of the time around Lowell and Boston. (p. 3)

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