Ulysses may, in fact, be the greatest trick ever pulled on the literary world. It is dense and virtually incomprehensible, and yet, somehow, it manages to maintain its reign as prom queen of the classics shelf. I’m telling you right now that this is a farce. We’ve all been bamboozled. Underneath all of the praise, hiding behind the sparkles and the makeup, is a snarky Chess Club captain. And she’s snickering at all of us for being such dumbasses.
Now, just hold on a moment. Before you jump all over me, trolls and well-meaning bibliophiles, I recognize that the book has its appeal. There’s plenty to be unearthed here. I mean, Warhol made art out of a soup can. There’s no reason you can’t do the same. I simply argue that it’s perception. This book is a source of raw material. It isn’t good literature- it’s simply a bunch of words placed awkwardly next to one another. But you do what you need to. I, for example, happen think very highly of movies where monsters come out of toilets. We all have our little quirks. These things make life more interesting.
But I will not be drinking the Kool-Aid this afternoon. This book was a massive and frustrating heap of garbage. It was sun-warmed gum on the sidewalk, the kind you step on and can’t get rid of no matter how many sticks you employ. There are a lot of people I respect who like this book. I still respect them, as I can accept character flaws. Some people commit adultery, others steal. A sin is a sin; I’m not here to judge. To me, liking this book is NO WORSE than speaking badly of your neighbor or using the Lord’s name in vain.
I give this “classic” two stars. One for being truly and unredeemingly awful, and a second for tricking people into thinking it’s good. I loves me some deceit.