September 16, 2008
DFW to INF
Well, it seemed only fitting to take a moment from what my bride calls "a book tour retirement" to share a memory of my only encounter with the late, great David Foster Wallace. We met at an airport club at the Dallas airport of all places. He was flying to Newark or so he claimed. Less than a minute into our small talk, a gentleman in a mustache and cowboy hat—in that order—asked him where the bar was. His answer, and I can remember none of the exact language, was compact, yet cosmotic; in fewer words than I use now, and again I cannot remember them with any specificity, DFW suggested that the bar was a) very easy to miss b) around the corner from the bag check and c) mildly depressing. The glint from an aircraft fuselage turned his glasses to flat, shining, cartoon eyes. I remember wanting to recognize him from his dust jacket photo and being disappointed that I did not.