When I pulled out my tattered copy of Catcher in the Rye, for some reason this was the only entire paragraph I underlined:
“Anyway, that’s what I wrote Stradlater’s composition about. Old Allie’s baseball mitt. I happened to have it with me, in my suitcase, so I got it out and copied down the poems that were written on it. All I had to do was change Allie’s name so that nobody would know it was my brother and not Stradlater’s. I wasn’t too crazy about doing it, but I couldn’t think of anything else descriptive. Besides, I sort of liked writing about it. It took me about an hour, because I had to use Stradlater’s lousy typewriter, and it kept jamming on me. The reason I didn’t use my own was because I’d lent it to a guy down the hall.”
— Holden Caulfield in Catcher in the Rye
When I think of J.D. Salinger, I think of a self-exiled sardonic old recluse. He hated certain words, like “grand,” which I totally would argue with him about. This man would have never again bothered to take to his Remington or Underwood typewriter with keys that stick and let loose.
When I take a few minutes and imagine him though, I see something different. Isn’t that something you’d want to read?
Dear Sir or Madam in Charge of Salinger’s Estate:
Holden wants you to ignore J.D. if he said to burn his papers in his will. He was just kidding.