I walked into work this morning fulfilling the promise I made to myself and to the human race that I would start listening to GREAT WORKS OF LITERATURE on audio book on my Ipod rather than random young-person music.
I'm starting with Nabokov's Lolita which is arranged into five minutes chunks of creepy goodness.
The first part was a longish and dullish framing device by the supposed editor of Humbert Humbert's manuscript. Then it leapt to Jeremy Irons as Humbert Humbert describing him and Lolita shifting from squalid hotel to foetid motel in search of a nameless fugitive and an illegal good-time before changing gears again to talk about HH receving the gift of a box to hold his chess pieces.
It was fascinating stuff but I did wonder why the story lurched about so much. I mean, I like taking a chain-saw to traditional narrative structure as much as the next guy but I was surprised at how it slid imperceptibly from one thing to another without any particular logic that I could discern.
That's when I noticed my ipod was on "shuffle album".
On the way home I'm going to slavishly adhere to convention and listen to it in the "correct" "order". Sometimes, the dominant paradigm is dominant for a reason.