Once a year, I take a month & I read everything I can by one author.
This year I read 4 books by Thomas Bernhard in one month.
And the year before that, it was everything by Denton Welch in one month.
But - in 2009 - see, this was very very dangerous - I read everything by Franz Kafka in one month.
I started with "Amerika."
It was August.
I read The Castle.
I read The Trial.
I read all the short stories.
I read The Stoker, even though it's (verbatim) the 1st chapter of Amerika - because I really enjoyed Amerika.
I read all the deleted stuff.
All the Blue Octavo notebooks.
The Burrows and so on.
I skimped on the letters.
(Don't care who he was outside of his own imagination.)
And when I was finished, I felt done.
It went quick.
I finished early.
I was done.
I was decimated.
To program any more was pointless.
My programs would never live as long as the trial.
Hadn't he told Max Brod to destroy all of those books?
He had sad to burn them, my friend, to burn these books.
But look, here was Amerika, thoroughly reconstructed.
And yet completely unfinished, in my hands.
What if Amerika was only written for 32-bit PowerPC?
Can an unfinished program be reconstructed??
Can I write a program and go, "Ah, well, you get the gist of it."
If The Trial was written for 32-bit PowerPC, Max Brod wouldn't have to burn them! He would just be like, "How do I even get this thing off the hard drive?"
It wasn't written for 32-bit PowerPC.
It was written for eyes.
At the end of Amerika, we don't even know how Karl gets to Oklahoma.
Who cares - he's in Amerika and he goes to Oklahoma.
In that last chapter, they say, "Does everyone have their identification papers?"
And a woman pulls a large bundle of papers out of her baby carriage - her perambulator - and raises them.
Karl has no papers, he simply raises his hand.
This is good enough, so they let him by.
What if he had not told Max Brod to burn them?
What if he had just not said anything to Max Brod except, "thanks a lot," and, "A fond farewell to you!"
In fact, seems weird he didn't burn them himself.
Tuberculosis doesn't stop you from burning paper, right?
A thousand pages.
Two thousand pages.
Maybe three thousand pages.
That's a lot, but I think he could have doone it, even alone, even with tuberculosis.
Imagine Kafka's fiendish little face rubbing his hands over that fire!
Or he could have hidden it inside an old 32-bit PowerPC.
No one's going to look there.
Just goes to show that you can't trust people who aren't you.
Of course he didn't want them burned.
That was just Kafka, writing his own death.
The ending has his signature on it.
Reality's kind of a medium, maybe greater than paper.
We all want life to have the same texture that we read about in novels.
Promise me you'll never read all 3 Kafka novels in a month.
A computer will never live as long as the The Trial.
He had [said] to burn them, my friend, to burn these books.
[This] was just Kafka, writing his own death.
[This] ending has his signature on it.