Sunday, 27 December 2009

Dmitri Nabokov: The enemy of art.

Let me preface this entry by saying Dmitri Nabokov, that I am on the one hand, forever in your debt. The book I unwrapped this morning, The Original of Laura, is tangibly beautiful. Chip Kidd's sublime design provides as wondrous a showcase for these Penguin-termed fragments as I, for one could ever have hoped for.

Let me not omit to mention either how grateful I am for the opportunity to see, nay possess, these exquisite perfect replicas of God's your father's smudged index cards... these photostat perforations of his precise, pencilled print.

But Dmitri, Dmitri. Gay Dmitri of seventy three years. You are quite repellent; Your introduction to this tome is one of the most disturbingly deluded diatribes I've ever read (and I had the misfortune to read your insisted-upon introduction to Pia Pera's Lo's Diary, you predatory pedant). Your talk of lesser minds, half-literate journalists and inferior intellects is delivered without a hint of irony; You believe this bull. You're in orbit of your own ego.
Clearly Dmitri, lifelong batchelorette Dmitri, your father cast a long shadow. I envy you not the eternal race to cheat the sun. You model your lyrical style upon him, like VN on a bad day, VN with a summer cold. You're Nutella on toast - a poor man's chocolate bar.

All this Dmitri, all this emulation and idolisation (and who can blame you for that - not I) - it just, it just never worked did it? He never really liked you. Gay Dmitri, with his supercilious, superfluous nature, living off his father's reputation, his mother's adoration. It's a vacuous life you've lead Dmitri, one of shabby Swiss hotels and Viennese Bath Houses (My italics). You have nothing to say, much less a beautiful way to say it. I wouldn't share my pen name if I were you either. We've seen your style, we've seen you flounder on the rocky shore as the retreating sea carries away your past connections. There's so much time between him and you now that you're no closer to him than we are. I'm not the only one to notice your considered, contrived Laura introduction fails to mention money. Hey nice guy, how much did desecrating Pops memory net you?


spklein52 said...

Your latest posting leaves a whole lot to be desired!

Anonymous said...

Agreed; pure drivel going on here.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to paste this from the NYT review (a sensible voice:

"[B]ut it was really never anybody’s business but the Nabokovs’. “To me,” Nabokov fils writes, “my parents, in a sense, had never died, but lived on, looking over my shoulder in a kind of virtual limbo, available to offer a thought or counsel to assist me with a vital decision,” and he ultimately concluded that “in putative retrospect, Nabo­kov would not have wanted me to become his Person from Porlock.” If that’s good enough for him, it should be good enough for the rest of us; it’s a moot point now, and Nabokovians at least will be grateful that the old man changed his putative mind."

Anonymous said...

This is nauseatingly badly written. What is it about Nabokov that makes the semi-stupid think it's a good idea to smugly try and imitate the inimitable? And you accuse Dmitri of doing the same! That's without taking into account how homophobic and spiteful it is... Do you really think Nabokov would have admired you in any way for writing this?

Jarvissa said...

Oh come now! Nauseatingly badly written? Pure drivel? It's a blog post, not a novella pitch. If it were a sparkling piece of prosaic wit I'd sell it to a publisher. Lovely as it is to see the DN Support Brigade out en masse, forgive me if don't issue a full and apologetic retraction. x

Anonymous said...

You forgot to mention pince-nez in there somewhere. Then the impersonation would have been complete.

Anonymous said...

You misspelled "bachelorette" so there, you have no business to be on your high horse. At least you should consult a dictionary. What is it with the "gay" as prefix to Dimitri?