Monday, November 12, 2007

Orhan Pamuk, the follow-up

Okay, so I was trying to think of what to say to a Nobel Laureate who just received an honorary doctorate, and not sound like a dork or like some bah-hah academic or something. I closed my eyes for a moment and remembered what it looked like to see him walk down the aisle in Gaston Hall with all those be-robed colleagues, ascend the stage, and receive the honorary doctoral hood. It kinda looked like getting married! I asked him about that, and he laughed and said yes, that's exactly what it felt like. He said the moment is surreal, and over very quickly, before you realize what is happening.

He was so laid-back and he seemed to have fun, like he does this all the time (which perhaps he does). His beautiful daughter Rüya was with him. I have met enough famous authors by now to be tired of the thrill. Most are okay, some are awful, but overall writers are better on the page than in person. Orhan Pamuk was an exception to that. He's a bit more interesting in person.

He snapped a photo of the three of us with his digital camera, and I regretted not having one myself, but I didn't know if it would be appropriate. D'oh. I hope he reads this and decides to send the image. Booklab at georgetown dot edu.

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