NABOKV-L post 0014424, Sun, 17 Dec 2006 23:30:04 -0500

A link between Pale Fire and 23 gallons of bottled water
[EDNOTE. Sandy Klein sends the following link to an editorial in the New York Times on December 16, 2006, entitled "The Story of the Numbers" (here reprinted in the Amherst, NY Times), which cites PF in a surprising context. -- SES]

There is a novel hidden in the raw data recently released in the Census Bureau’s 2007 Statistical Abstract — a kind of collective “Pale Fire” by Vladimir Nabokov, a portrait of strangeness amid familiarity. All the vestiges of causality and context are missing from the numbers, so one is left to ponder what link there might be between the growing size of our houses and our drinking 23 gallons of bottled water a year. [. . .]

Search the archive:
Contact the Editors:,
Visit Zembla:
View Nabokv-L policies: