- Johhny Truant’s friend who brought him to The
- Shortened form of
Qualuudes (Ludes are a sedative, closely related in effects to
barbituates, which are mentioned in Johnny’s second paragraph in
Middle English meaning sound, noise or clamour.
– Nicknamed “Hoss” by Lude.
- Truant: A student who
is AWOL from school without explanation, an absentee, a runaway.
– A stripper that Johnny has a minor obsession with, who has a
tattoo of the rabbit character from Bambi
just under her pantyline.
- Thumper may symbolise
was Disney’s version of Benjamin Bunny, Peter Rabbit’s cousin:
Benjamin Bunny is helpful but naïve,
getting caught by a cat while attempting to help Peter get his
clothes back from Mr McGregor’s garden.
– An old, blind man who—Johnny speculates—is American, though
others “detected an accent even if they could never say for
certain where it came from.” Lived in the same apt building as
Lude, and would walk around the courtyard twice daily (morning and
evening), attracting the eighty-some stray cats that lived there.
Died at eighty years old with no friends, family or other social
is also the name of the primary character of La
an Italian film from 1954 directed by Frederico Fellini.
The titualar character is a “brutish strongman” who buys
girl named Gelsomina to act as his assistant on the road. Gelsomina
is a foil to Zampanò,
young and full of joy (slightly manic, pixie dream-girl, but combined with one who has not yet been broken by the world). They
meet a clown named Il Motto (the fool) who eventually plays a joke
causing the strongman to chase him with a knife. Il Motto attempts
to convince Gelsomina that she has worth, despite Zampanò’s
cruel treatment. When Zampanò
and Gelsomina come across Il Motto on the road alone, fixing a flat
proceeds to beat him to death. This finally breaks Gelsomina’s
spirit and she has a flat affect for the next few days, after which
abandons her while she is napping. Years later, he learns that she
was taken in by a family only to waste away and die shortly
thereafter. Upon learning this, Zampanò
gets drunk and wanders a beach before breaking down in tears.
represents a womaniser who takes advantage of someone who is too
inexperienced to know better. Their relationship symbolised two
people in a relationship that will prove fatal, yet they remain
together, not knowing why. Fellini also wished to represent the
hard lives of people who lived on the road.
is considered one of the most influential films of all time and won
the inaugural Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 1956.
notes that, early (3AM) on the morning that he and Lude went into
flat to find The
things appeared strange (though this may be a result of 20/20
hindsight): the front gate creaked as if unused for centuries; the
hall seemed too dark for the small, hanging lamps to illuminate; Lude
only spoke in whispers. (pg xiv)
notes “two things” that “don’t make much difference”:
1) in the months preceding Zampanò’s
death, the courtyard cats had started to vanish. Lude only ever found
the remains of “one with its head ripped off and another with
its guts strewn all over the sidewalk,” but never any of the
others. 2) Right next to Zampanò’s
body, Lude had found four gouges in the floor six or seven inches
long apiece. They looked like claw-marks, but the police disregarded
them, since Zampanò’s
body bore no physical trauma. (pg xv)
notes the smell upon entering the flat—stale and somewhat fœtid,
with innumerable layers. The smell is wholly organic and so strong
had sealed the flat off from the outside world—ostensibly to keep
his smell in. (pp xv-xvi)
Uprooted or displaced from one’s geographical or social environment.
A rood or rood cross, sometimes known as a triumphal cross, is a
cross or crucifix, especially the large Crucifixion set above the
entrance to the chancel of a medieval church. (pg xviii)
An American art photographer that focuses on death, corpses (whole
and dismembered), disfigurement, phyiscal mutation and carny/outsider
culture. (pg xxi)
One with an obsessive impulse to write. (pg xxii)
is stated that Zampanò’s
death occurred in late 1996. (pg xii)