Footnote to Bishop Berkeley

In the spring of 1997 I spent a week as a parent chaperon with my son’s 7th grade class at an ecology-themed camp in Sharon, Massachusetts. There I met this guy, who was a 7th grade math teacher, but more interestingly, the illustrator of the graphic novel version of Paul Auster’s City of Glass.

Now, as you may know, Auster writes austere post-modern metafictional stories about the nature of reality and our inability to use language to apprehend or transmit it.

Anyway, I got along really well with Karasik and we spent a lot of time walking in the woods together, talking philosophy and deep bullshit, when the students were in class. On the last afternoon that we were to spend together, we found ourselves silently sitting side by side on a fallen tree in the woods. Neither of us spoke for a long while. It was a beautiful day with not a cloud in the sky and not the least bit of wind. Then, somewhere nearby, a tree fell over, crashing to the ground with an incongruous roar. Soon afterwards all was again silent.

Karasik and I looked at each other.

Neither one of us said a thing.

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