Friday, August 22, 2008

Erotomania: In Transit (a reader's testimonial)

We received this through top-secret channels of communication. A reader of Erotomania: A Romance, novel by Francis Levy, on New York City's subway system.

"I started reading the book on the subway. People around me quickly noticed the effect the book was having on me and became curious. Soon, they were asking, hey man, what you reading. Then it was, hey man, read it out loud. The whole car was insistent. What choice did I have.

"So I started to read it aloud. I am no actor, but I read well. I read slowly, calmly, carefully. I did not ham it up. I did not overemphasize the racy parts. But then the writing doesn't need that, does it. Perhaps my calm reading only increased the effect.

"I was focused on my reading, nose in the book. So I didn't at first see what was going on. People stayed on, let their stops pass by. They become flushed and a bit squirmy. At first, they didn't know what to do. But then one man and woman who were not traveling together, moved to sit together. Soon the entire car had paired up. Some of the pairs were a bit weird, ages and styles that did not belong together, but no one wanted to be alone. I just kept reading. I was totally engaged and I guess became oblivious to those around me. When I finally came to a point where I needed to pause, I looked up. Every single couple, young, old, in between, mixed up, were lying back in post coital bliss. The car was now heavy not only with the words, but also the sounds, smell and taste of sex.

"It was like the old cigar factories. One worker would read stories while therest worked. I was the reader, they worked, so to speak.

"Though i had not participated, not had the satisfaction the others achieved, I still felt very good. I hadn't written the book and I hadn't had thepleasure of letting it take me over. But clearly I had helped increase the pleasure in the world by a small amount in one subway car.

"I left the car then to allow them all to put themselves back together and resume their anonymous travels. No one said a thing as I exited."

I'd like to encourage this sort of behavior. It's good for people.

As the reader notes, the book has a tendency to make you squirm. Anyone with an experience of reading (doesn't have to be aloud) Erotomania in a public place is strongly encouraged to either share by commenting on this blog, or emailing to twodollar [at]

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