November 14, 2007

The World's First Blogger

Does this sound familiar: thirty year-old single guy, grossly overweight, lives at home with his mother, walks around in his underwear, flatulent, dyspeptic, paranoid, writes daily misanthropic screeds?

The average blogger? Almost.

It's Ignatius J. Reilly, the protagonist of the early 1960's novel "A Confederacy of Dunces." Other than Reilly's Big Chief writing tablet and Venus Medalist pencil instead of the not-yet-invented personal computer, the similarities to members of today's "pajamas media" seem eerie.

Too bad "Dunces" author John Kennedy Toole offed himself back in 1969 after failing to get his book published. Once it was published in 1980, "Dunces" won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, as well as countless accolades for its humor, its themes of race and class, its political incorrectness, and its description of the seamy life of New Orleans. If Toole were around today, however, he might notice something even more important -- that, in Ignatius J. Reilly, he may have created the World's First Blogger.


At 12:34 PM, Blogger HomeImprovementNinja said...

That's a great book. It's a shame that more people haven't read it. I guess they'd rather read The DaVinci Code. Blech!

At 10:48 AM, Blogger media concepts said...

I'd love to see it made into a film, but apparently that effort is cursed. Supposedly, three of the actors considered to play Ignatius at various times were John Belushi, John Candy and Chris Farley!

At 2:30 PM, Blogger Barbara said...

I just knew it was Ignatius! This is so perfect. There is actually a statue of him in New Orleans, did you know that?

It's a shame that many authors die before their works become acclaimed. Another such case is "The Stones of Summer" by Dow Mossman. Check out this documentary on this book by Mark Moskowitz.

At 1:03 AM, Blogger media concepts said...

I learned about the statue while doing the light research for this post, and almost included a picture but the ones I found were copyrighted. Now I'd like to go back to N.O. and see it!

At 10:31 PM, Blogger kaushik said...

I found this post hilarious

At 10:31 PM, Blogger media concepts said...

Kashuk, a belated thanks, and I'm glad you enjoyed the post.


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