Irving, Vietnam, Baseball discussed on BBC Radio 4's Bookclub

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

And of course, what happens to comes about as a result over an accident of hitting that baseball in a particular way, at the particular moment, which was no accident where it will indeed would, but where the mother of his friend happens to be turning round waving to the man in the crowd who turns out to be the real father of his friend. Women are badly behaved at sporting event. If you've noticed, but I, you know, I really don't like to go to sporting events with women because they don't watch what's going on and and in sports with bowls that can be dangerous. Right? They can get hit with something because they're not watching what's happening. Next question that was one here. John. We've talked about a voice to physical countries and he's shortness and those tunnels be crucially of use the end of the book which came I was it the physical characteristics or was it the end incidents for which those of useful? He was always in my mind, small, the voice by the time I got to the first sentence obviously by the time I had made my backward motion from last sentence, which is a prayer for him. Ogodo pleases, give him back. She'll keep asking you that was always the end, both his size and his voice, our why those Vietnamese refugee children listened to him. This, why they do it. He says, so everything has reason in his lexicon, but I'll tell you exactly what began the book the idea of the book before I knew a lessons I was sitting round in my hometown, southern New Hampshire was one Christmas time, and people who'd gone off to university and gotten married and had kids and all we, we were just got together people in town who've come back home to see their mom and dad or something like that. And so there were a bunch of people my age. I think the Tom were been over for a couple of years and someone said, well, there's so and so he died there and I contributed my name's and somebody said the name of a boy that I said, oh, I didn't know him. It was Russell somebody I set up. I guess I didn't know him. They said, oh, yeah, you did. I said, no, I didn't know. I'm sorry, died Vietnam, but I didn't know him. And this guy said you used to pick him up. Buzz ankles and shake him souls. Money fell out of his pocket. And I said, one of the stupidest things I've ever said in my life, I said that. Hughes, too small to go to fit. And my friend who is sitting beside me, said Irving, he probably grew. And I went home and that night I wrote down to myself. What if he didn't. Now I didn't even begin to write that book for ten years after that Christmas, I was home, see my parents, but I remember that impetus remember that beginning because so many novels of mine begin with a, what? If idea, Yoel what if this little boy, I remembered torturing in Sunday school. What if he stayed the same and Owen is not killed in Vietnam, but he's killed because of it. And and I was in the perfectly at the time. A guilty position of the observer..

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