Matthew Polly’s new book American Shaolin comes with this memorable epigraph from Snow Crash, which I can’t quite transcribe verbatim on Time’s website:
Until a man is 25, he still thinks, every so often, that under the right circumstances he could be the baddest motherf____er in the world. If I moved to a martial arts monastery in China and studied real hard for 10 years. If I just dropped out and devoted my life to being bad.
So true. Though I think 35 would be a bit more accurate. Maybe even 37.
American Shaolin is about how Polly dropped out of Princeton to spend two years studying kung fu with Shaolin monks in China. It’s about as cool as you think it would be. Though as far as I know he still doesn’t have a nuclear sidecar like Raven in Snow Crash.
In other news: weird shark.