Posted by: Jeanie F | October 19, 2009

Padgett Powell

The Sunday NY Times Magazine ran an article by Dan Halpern about author Padgett Powell. Probably best known for his first novel, Edisto, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, Powell is one of those Southern writers with a unique voice and perspective.

When Halpern arrives to interview him, Powell is preparing to hunt for raccoons who are killing his chickens. He is trapping the coons, but finds he is unable to shoot a caged animal. 

In reflecting on his dilemma, Powell produces one of the best personal reflections I’ve read or heard in a long time. He had, he said, “enough N.R.A. in him to feel he should have no sympathy for the thing but then also enough NPR in him to hesitate.”

Such a great juxtaposition of concepts! It has really made me think about the personal dilemmas I often face and the competing forces that compel me to inaction. For example, I have enough MTV in me to love hip hop music but then also enough AARP in me to keep me from getting up and dancing.

How about you? How would you fill in the blanks: I have enough ___________ in me to ______________, but then also enough ____________________ in me to keep me from ____________.


Responses

  1. I’m thinking of how I’d fill it in, Jeanie. Compelling!

  2. I know you’ll come up with something great!

  3. I have enough WA in me to yearn for lots of green around me, but then also enough LA in me to keep me from actually moving there (for good!)

  4. And it’s a good thing for me – you can visit WA, but you need to come back to LA!!!

  5. How about,

    I have enough Dr. Phil in me to try to understand where you’re coming from, but enough Phil Donahue in me to keep me from believing a word you’re saying.

    Love me some Padgett! Check out this review of The Interrogative Mood:

    http://thebrowntweedsociety.com/2009/11/24/tbts-reviews-the-interrogative-mood/

  6. Good one! And I enjoyed reading your review on The Interrogative Mood. I’ve been waiting to hear from someone who has actually read it – think it needs to go into my queue! After all, I have enough William Bennett in me to worry about the format, but enough Larry Page in me to give it a try!


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