November 25, 2015
Reddit troll spends a year obsessively posting about Infinite Jest
by Julia Fleischaker
What happens when you can’t tell a troll from the people they’re making fun of? At The Daily Dot, Miles Klee introduces us to to jeremy1122, a Reddit troll who has spent the whole year doing a perfect impersonation of a David Foster Wallace evangelist, embodying “neckbeard faux-intellectualism.” Klee reports:
The redditor—who did not respond to request for comment—first popped up in r/books one year ago to offer “An introduction to Infinite Jest.” A trifle presumptuous, you might think: There are plenty of intros to this popular but intimidating book online.
Then you read his actual post.
I’ve read the book about eleven times, so I just want say a few words and address people who are thinking about reading it or are just beginning. Before you embark on your journey into the mind of a genius, you have to understand a few things that are very important. When we talk about David Foster Wallace, we’re talking about a man whose I.Q. could not be measured. Past 200, I.Q. tests get imprecise. We don’t know whether we’re dealing with a man with an I.Q. of 200 or 300 or what. We can’t measure it. When it comes to Wallace-tier geniuses, the standard tests simply don’t apply. You see, Wallace could have entered any field he wanted. He was a real-life Will Hunting.
Just look at this perfect exchange—jeremy1122’s literary snobbishness inciting a fellow redditor to even higher levels of literary snobbishness:
Bro, do you even read McElroy?
Julia Fleischaker is a former director of marketing and publicity at Melville House.