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Monday, November 05, 2007


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I'm picking up what you're laying down, Dan - but I gotta admit I did the same with Krakauer's treament of McCandless' story when I first read it back in 2000. I'm less inclined to see it as a misplaced celebration of stupidity and machismo, as you do. I think Krakauer was plenty critical. McCandless was a fool. But, as you say, we've all felt some inkling of the same idealistic, naive feelings that drove him to his ultimate stupidity, we just never acted on them as he did. That's why we (and I include Krakauer in this) are so fascinated by his story; there's so much of our own hearts in it. Incidentally, I'd be interested to look at the book's (not the film's) readership demographics. I bet it's 10:1 guys to gals.
(Hope all's well in Chucktown. Swing by M&U (link above) and drop me a 'y'all' sometime.)


Right from the introduction, when Krakauer opines that the guy harbored "no illusions" about what life (without adequate food or supplies!) in the Alaskan wild would be like, I was suspecting romanticism.

The story is a tragedy and it needed to be told but it is important to keep in mind that this was a young man dealing with at least serious personal issues (and very possibly mental illness) that went unrecognized until it was too late.

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