Last October, Jeffrey Eugenides ’83, author of Middlesex and The Virgin Suicides, published The Marriage Plot, a novel that follows Brown students from their 1982 Commencement through their following year in the harsh real world. Although the ensuing literary hoopla has subsided, I still haven’t forgotten the relatively extreme existential crisis the book triggered in me.
I’d picked up a copy at the Brown Bookstore and settled into a Blue Room sofa. As I flipped through the pages, moving through the Commencement-day flashbacks, it slowly began to dawn on me that I was messing with the fabric of time and space. I WAS A CHARACTER IN THE MARRIAGE PLOT EVEN AS I PERUSED IT. How did Jeffrey Eugenides know my life?
“Ok, calm down,” I reminded myself. “First of all, it’s set in the 1980s. Secondly, Eugenides went to Brown, so obviously he’d know the day-to-day existence of an average student.” But I still couldn’t shake the feeling he was writing about me. Consider the evidence: