"Television gives good disaster. I suppose this was nothing but a more vernacular version of my grandmother's observation of the effect of TV on old people: that watching it would hasten their deaths. If watching television doesn't hasten death, it surely manages to make death very inviting; for telvision so shamelessly sentimentalizes and romanticizes death that it makes the living feel they have missed something- just by staying alive."
400 pages through. Irving has made this novel far too long, but he does bring up some very interesting points throughout. The hilariousness of the first four chapters is in total contrast to the seriousness of the last four chapters (although, I must admit to not being able to trust my emotions entirely, right now).
It's not "The World According to Garp," but it is very spellbinding, just the same. Will post some information about the bookclub, shortly.