Kjersti Skomsvold: Jo fortere jeg går, jo mindre er jeg (The Faster I Walk, The Smaller I Am)

The latest addition to my website is Kjersti Skomsvold‘s Jo fortere jeg går, jo mindre er jeg (The Faster I Walk, The Smaller I Am). Mathea Martisen, who is elderly but we are not sure how elderly, lives in a flat with her husband Epsilon. He is a professional statistician. She has never worked (except for one day). She is a loner. She has no friends, her relatives are all dead and she is pathologically shy. She spends much of the day watching TV but ruminates on life and on death. I’m just as afraid of living life as I am of dying. she says. She has no children (one false alarm) and her dog died because of her foolishness. When there are events she can attend, she either declines to do so or it does not work out well. Epsilon is something of a loner too though presumably has work colleagues and he does interact with people. Both seem to be obsessed with death – her favourite reading is the obituaries in the newspaper – and she in particular thinks about it often, including imagining that she might die alone in the flat with nobody discovering her body. The one major event in her life was being struck by lightning at school but she recovered. This is when she met Epsilon who asked her about the experience. There are certainly elements of humour in this story but, on the whole, we can only feel sorry for Mathea as she just cannot cope with life.

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