Bleak House: dangerous reading!

I was running on the local hike and bike trail today — listening to Bleak House on my headphones — when suddenly I was falling forward and slamming my head into the pavement.

I was about a mile from my car and walked back holding my shirt to my head. Lots of blood, but in the end not that big of a wound. The bigger problem may be my knees which also took a nasty hit. That could keep me from running for a while.

When I went back to Bleak House later I could not at all recall what had been going on, not even with the chapter title. But once the narrator mentioned Mrs Bagnet, I remembered all.

This chapter — about Mrs. Bagnet’s birthday party is rather funny. Dickens goes all out to discuss how awful the poultry they have for supper was. Not just badly cooked, but a bad bird to begin with. None of this, of course, has anything at all to do with the plot. I wonder if he was sold a lousy chicken and decided to vent his wrath in the book, so just worked a bad meal into the story right then and there.

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4 Responses

  1. I’m sorry about your accident! I’m glad the wound wasn’t that big.

    Maybe, since Dickens was getting paid by the word, he wanted to earn back the money spent upon the wretched capon.

  2. Ouch. Hope you’re okay. I hate how much heads can bleed.

  3. And I always thought the reason they say you shouldn’t wear headphones when running was for fear of being mugged….

    Hope you feel better!

  4. This is why I avoid exercise …

    Seriously, sorry about the injury. Head wounds are nasty!

    As for Dickens … he does tend to wander, doesn’t he? Still, that is wordcraft in which to lose yourself …

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