I came across this article in the NY Times book-related blog, Papercuts. It got me thinking what music I would give to my favorite authors. What music would I recommend to James Joyce? That's when I had my epiphany. I suddenly realized what reading Ulysses is like: trying to figure out the "meaning" of R.E.M. lyrics. Sometimes, you think you get what Michael Stipe is talking about, but then you realize you have no idea. Sometimes it appears that there is meaning to the song...or maybe there is no meaning, and R.E.M. is playing a huge joke on anyone who tries to find the meaning. Reading Ulysses is TOTALLY like reading the lyrics to "It's the End of the World As We Know It..."
"That's great, it starts with an earthquake, birds and snakes, an aeroplane and Lenny Bruce is not afraid/ Eye of a hurricane, listen to yourself churn - world serves its own needs, dummy serve your own needs /Feed it off an aux speak, grunt, no, strength, Ladder start to clatter with fear fight down height /Wire in a fire, representing seven games, a government for hire and a combat site / Left of west and coming in a hurry with the furies breathing down your neck. "
Yeah. That pretty much sums up Ulysses. Which I have now officilly finished.