The Ocean Full of Bowling Balls

“The ocean was terrible now. It was full of bowling balls.”

In this episode of the show, Frank discusses the enigmatic nature of the J.D. Salinger estate. The estate has been silent since the death of the famous author in 2010, even as documentaries come out about him, and some of his unpublished stories are leaked online. Through all of this, the estate remains completely silent, like a straightjacketed mummy with duct tape over its mouth. Discussed as well are the Story Magazine collection at the Princeton University library, Friedrich Nietzsche’s influence on modern philosophy, two members’ stories from the Real Writers’ Group in Austin, TX, and the movie “Being John Malkovich.”

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Relevant links and show notes:

J.D. Salinger – Nine Stories
Princeton University
Whit Burnett’s Story Magazine
Saving Private Ryan
Band of Brothers
Wolfgang Borchert
The Art of the Tale – Daniel Halpern
Being John Malkovich
Friedrich Nietzsche


Support the show by buying one of my e-books (please?):

Almost Home
A Car Crash of Sorts
The Whirligig


Music provided by radiotimes, admiralbob77, and lazztunes_07 of Outtro courtesy of melodysheep on YouTube. Liner provided by the lovely and talented Lady Anarchy, Ms. Amanda Billyrock. Intro voicework by BelindaJoh.

Posted by Frank Marcopolos

Frank Marcopolos founded "The Whirligig" literary magazine in 1999, which has been called "a landmark, demonstrating the power of the literary underground." It has been said that "you get this true lion-roaring sense that Editor Frank Marcopolos knows what he likes, and how to read, and how to publish, and he has guts, and eats insects on Wheaties with bleach." His long-form fiction has been reviewed with such praise as "thorough-goingly entertaining" and "highly readable...recalls the style of Michael Chabon or John Irving. A literary gem that should not be missed." A broadcasting-school graduate, his unique literary-audio work has been featured in movie trailers, scholastic environments, and on YouTube, with one of his audiobooks achieving over 100,000 "views" there.


  1. I think Salinger needs an exegesis. And I think that exegesis needs to come from you. I can’t take any more bowling balls or banana fish without understanding what’s going on.

      1. As for the bowling balls, they are simply a symbol of unfair, or unearned, revenge.

        *It should be noted, as well, that Kenneth Caulfield in this story later becomes “Allie” in The Catcher in the Rye. Similarly, Vincent becomes “D.B.”

        1. Also, for more symbolism that one can ponder over for days at a time, one may want to listen to “Teddy” ….

          Teddy – 10-year-old Boy Genius

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