Nothing In It

He sat leaning forward in the seat with his elbows on the empty seatback in front of him and his chin on his forearms and he watched the play with great intensity. He’d the notion that there would be something in the story itself to tell him about the way the world was or was becoming but there was not. There was nothing in it at all.

McCarthy, Cormac. All the Pretty Horses. Vintage International. Pg 21.

I get stumped each time I read this.

  1. Is John Grady Cole just lacking the critical faculty to understand?
  2. Is his mother (an actress in the play) pursuing something that makes no sense to him, therefore showing the chasm that’s formed between them?
  3. Does Cormac, a playwright himself, think that plays (and other literature) don’t really say anything about the world (because the world is meaningless matter in motion and there is nothing to be found in it and therefore nothing we say actually means anything)?
  4. It was a bad play?

I like option 4 the best.

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