(urth) Sightings at Twin Mounds
rpirkola at hotmail.com
Sun Jun 22 08:59:00 PDT 2014
If the straightforward interpretation of the story is all there is, several points would need to be clarified to satisfy me.
First, why does Wolfe believe that this story, unlike all the other UFO, black dog, vanishing hitchhikers, etc., stories he has read, is satisfactory where the others are not? Second, what does Wolfe mean when he hints that "the frame is the whole story"?
Third, what would be the point of mentioning the cannibalism of the wendigo or the wendigo at all? The story would work just as well in the original interpretation without the wendigo.
Fourth, in the Introduction to Storeys from the Old Hotel, Wolfe makes special mention of his fondness for Sasquatch: the Apes Among Us by John Green. This book, though I have not read it, is said to be a definitive collection of documented Bigfoot sightings up to the time of its publication in 1978.I think this helps bolster the fact that the story we read is an excerpt from a similar book authored by the narrator on UFOs or such-like. This shows that the "genre" of this story is mostcertainly that of the Unsolved Mysteries category. Of course, the most famous Sasquatch "evidence"is the old Patterson-Gimlin film of the man in the ape suit ambling away from the camera before giving one last over-the-shoulder glance. Thus we have the firmly established genre of the supernaturalmyth being taken up by so-called investigators who themselves are fabricating everything but the underlying myth. It could be said that the narrator of Sightings at Twin Mounds is engagingin just such an endeavor, with his motives a tad more perverse. In fact, the cannibalism is really not essentialto my reading of the story either. The narrator could just as easily have murdered Robakowskiwithout eating him, but that brings us back to my third question, above. That aside, if the narrator just murdered Robakowski to set up his elaborate supernatural hoax, he may have deliberately placed the "modern materials"at the mound. He might then have waited until the materials were discovered to do his write-up of the tale, that being the perfect final note for his fabricated supernatural event.
Fifth, Wolfe states that the UFO, etc.,stories that he enjoys reading and whose style he wishes to emulatein Sightings at Twin Mounds are "supposedly factual". If he is indeed writing a story in that "style" itstands to reason that his story as well would be made up of the "supposedly factual".
Finally, Wolfe states in the Introduction that he likes the story. The stories he comes out and says he likesor is proud of are some of his richest works. E.g. Beech Hill, A Solar Labyrinth, Parkroads -- A Review, to namea few just from SftOH. Again the original interpretation is the one invited by a first reading such that it seems unlikely Wolfe would be so fond of a rather straightforward sf piece that requires only one trip through its pages unless it held greater secrets. He also says that it is an "experiment" which could account for its deviation from the well established norms of his other prevaricating narrators.
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