The Dark Night

Posted: September 8th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: DFW | No Comments »

After a brief illness, Bob Giroux (of Farrar, Straus Giroux) passes away at a home in New Jersey on September 5, 2008. Throughout his career, the writers Giroux was closest to—John Berryman, Robert Lowell (who died 9/12/77), Jean Stafford—all broke down.

After losing the second set, Roger Federer defeats Andy Murray to win his fifth consecutive US Open title on September 8.

After weeks of speculation, rumors swirl that the fourth largest investment bank in the US, Lehman Brothers, won’t be able to raise the required capital for a bailout. The Dow Jones Industrial Average drops another 2.5% on September 9 as the financial crisis widens.

“I am not very curious about the lives or personalities of other writers.”—David Foster Wallace to Jacob Didier, 2005.

After the Democratic convention in Denver, David Remnick’s analysis of Obama’s rhetorical powers appears in the Talk of the Town, September 8 issue of The New Yorker. David Foster Wallace had agreed to write an analysis of Obama and rhetoric for GQ magazine but deferred in August, citing a stomach ailment. Joel Lovell at GQ had offered Wallace a deadline of September 12.

After weeks of border skirmishes, Navy SEALs raid the Pakistani town of Angur Ada. Seven years after 9/11, the trail to find Osama Bin Laden had gone cold. Vice-Admiral William McRaven (who would be installed as Chancellor of the University of Texas system just six years later) wanted to jump start the mission with a ground raid in Pakistan itself.

After a decade of construction and billions of dollars invested, the first beam was circulated through the Large Hadron Collider on the morning of September 10, 2008.

The code among gutter punks is not to inquire about or investigate someone’s past.

After all of Galveston Island is ordered to evacuate, three million Texans lose power on the night of September 12, 2008. Hurricane Ike makes landfall the next morning, causing upwards of $35B in damage and killing at least 50.

“Trying to calculate the odds against two poets as talented as Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton taking part in the same university writing workshop at the same time—and with an instructor of the stature of Robert Lowell.”—David Markson, The Last Novel

After John McCain showcases his running mate Sarah Palin at the Republican National Convention, the duo briefly overtake Obama-Biden in the Quinnipiac polls for the week ending September 12, 2008.

“In the Nazi camps, it was forbidden to rescue a man who wanted to hang himself.”—Evan S. Connell, Points for a Compass Rose

After opening on Friday, September 12, 2008, the Coen Brothers’ Burn After Reading wins the weekend box office, knocking Heath Ledger’s The Dark Knight down to 9th place.

Federer fathers four children in nine years and is, by all accounts, a devoted and loving father.

After dinner, I am running bath water for my toddler’s nightly routine. Somewhere out in that dark night, Ed Champion’s finger hovers above the tweet button, eager to break the news of an author’s death.