Friday, June 14, 2013

Who is the angularest one of all?

Well I finally got back to Atlas Shrugged. I read chapters 4 AND 5!

Although I must admit that the thing that kept me slogging along through two whole chapters was wanting to find out exactly how angular Francisco d'Anconia is. And I was not disappointed.

Chapters 4 and 5 are mostly a flashback to Dagny and d'Anconia growing up together and then falling in love as young adults - but then D'Anconia mysteriously went away.

Then we come back to the present and Dagny is meeting d'Anconia in a swanky hotel. There are many noteworthy items here but I'll save them for later. The most important aspect of these two chapters is the passage near the end of chapter five when Rand finally describes d'Anconia:
Nobody described his appearance as Latin, yet the word applied to him, not in its present but in its original sense, not pertaining to Spain but to ancient Rome. His body seemed designed as an exercise in consistency of style, a style made of gauntness, of tight flesh, of long legs and swift movements. His features had the fine precision of sculpture.
So there we go. The perfect Ayn Rand man - gaunt, tight, long, precise. She doesn't use the word angular but all that tight gauntness can lead to nothing else.

To be honest, I already knew he was the perfect Ayn Rand hero because prior to his physical description we learned he was obsessed with work and with making money and every single thing he ever attempts he does perfectly the first time, from hitting a baseball to driving a speed boat.

And when it comes to l'amour, well let's just say that ole Francisco takes what he wants with nary a trace of altruism.