Chapter 9

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Page 88

to chercher le geek
Likely an homage to detective pulp fiction. The phrase from which it derives, "cherchez la femme" ("look for the woman") has been around since at least the Dumas novel The Mohicans of Paris (1854) and has come to embody a cliché of detective pulp fiction: no matter what the problem, a woman is often the root cause. The phrase has come to refer to explanations that automatically find the same root cause, no matter the specifics of the problem. Wikipedia

"Chercher" is the infinitive of "look" and "cherchez" is the imperative form.

Manifested into Dorval
One of those weird Pynchonian sentences that give translators headaches, this means that Maxine is listed as a passenger on the flight arriving at Dorval airport, i.e., is listed on the plane's manifest which Dorval has.

le tout Montreal
All Montreal.

pronounced "Boingo"

Page 89

Cute name. Aside from the being a universal nickname for the Internet, "net" is also common French for "clean". ("Nettoyer" = To clean).

One of the first phrases taught in (I think) almost every introductory French course is "Enchantée de faire votre connaissance", roughly "Delighted to make your acquaintance"

We're beyond good and evil here
This is a reference to Friedrich Nietzsche's book Beyond Good and Evil (1886). Felix uses this reference to say he can do whatever he pleases.

...the evening movie on the Aboriginal Peoples' Television Network, whose film library contained every Keanu Reeves movie ever made, including, that night, Felix's personal favorite Johnny Mnemonic.
The APTN does actually have a week of Keanu Reeves films in the summer called Keanu! Movie Blitz (see commercial spot here [1]). The network's somewhat mysterious devotion to Reeves may be a means of asssuring "Canadian" content since Reeves grew up in Toronto (though he was born in Beirut). Further, there may be some tenuous sense of aboriginal kinship (albeit non-North American) since KR does have some Hawaiiaan ancestry through his father (emphasized through his Hawaiiaan first name that means "cool breeze over mountains"). Notable films by Reeves up to this point, if I'm reading the time frame of the novel right, include Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Point Break, My Own Private Idaho, Dracula, Much Ado About Nothing, Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, Little Buddha, Speed, and, perhaps most significantly, The Matrix. I'm not sure just what it means, but Felix preferring Johnny Mnemonic over Speed and The Matrix is surely saying something important him. Or maybe Pynchon is simply giving a friendly shout-out to William Gibson, writer of Johnny Mnemonic and he wanted to namedrop a film that has some resonance (see below) with his own novel.

Johnny Mnemonic
Film based on a short story by William Gibson, who also wrote the screenplay. The plot is pretty apropos to Bleeding Edge': "In 2021, Johnny (Keanu Reeves) is a "mnemonic courier" with a data storage device implanted in his brain, allowing him to discreetly carry information too sensitive to transfer across the Net, the virtual-reality equivalent of the Internet. " Wikipedia

Page 91

Ayn al-hammam
Arabic: "Where are the toilets?"

Page 92

Another Hitchcock reference. Possible thread in the novel? Also, the scene in question is of a knifing, you know, a murder committed with a weapon that has an edge, as in a "bleeding edge." Just saying.

Basil St. John in the life of Brenda Starr
Brenda Starr, Reporter was a comic strip about a glamorous, adventurous female reporter. It was created in 1940 by Dale Messick for the Chicago Tribune Syndicate. In the story, her love interest was Basil St. John. They were married, had a child, then divorced. See WIKI.

Page 93

chase around the world after black-orchid serum
Another allusion to Basil St. John (see previous page), who was obsessed with black-orchid serum.

Page 95

Windows on the World
A restaurant on the top floor of the North Tower of the World Trade Center, which, of course, was destroyed on 9/11.

"Like going to Collegiate"
a private school in NYC which Pynchon's son attended.

Chapter 1
pp. 1-7
Chapter 2
pp. 8-19
Chapter 3
pp. 20-29
Chapter 4
pp. 30-40
Chapter 5
pp. 41-52
Chapter 6
pp. 53-67
Chapter 7
pp. 68-79
Chapter 8
pp. 80-86
Chapter 9
pp. 87-95
Chapter 10
pp. 96-111
Chapter 11
pp. 112-120
Chapter 12
pp. 121-133
Chapter 13
pp. 134-144
Chapter 14
pp. 145-159
Chapter 15
pp. 160-171
Chapter 16
pp. 172-184
Chapter 17
pp. 185-197
Chapter 18
pp. 198-210
Chapter 19
pp. 211-218
Chapter 20
pp. 219-229
Chapter 21
pp. 230-238
Chapter 22
pp. 239-246
Chapter 23
pp. 247-255
Chapter 24
pp. 256-264
Chapter 25
pp. 265-273
Chapter 26
pp. 274-287
Chapter 27
pp. 288-300
Chapter 28
pp. 301-313
Chapter 29
pp. 314-326
Chapter 30
pp. 327-337
Chapter 31
pp. 338-346
Chapter 32
pp. 347-353
Chapter 33
pp. 354-364
Chapter 34
pp. 365-382
Chapter 35
pp. 383-394
Chapter 36
pp. 395-407
Chapter 37
pp. 408-422
Chapter 38
pp. 423-438
Chapter 39
pp. 439-447
Chapter 40
pp. 448-462
Chapter 41
pp. 463-477
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