It’s happened to me dozens of times. Maybe more. Especially back when I was teaching classroom after classroom full of kids. Someone comes up to me. Someone whose name I should know. Yet, I don’t. I’m wracking my brain, commanding it to come up with the name I know is there, but in the end, I try to smooth it over with an over-the-top smile and fake-sounding “Hi!”
But, hey, at least I care. That counts for something, right? I want to remember the names of everyone I meet, but sometimes, they just slip through the cracks.
I don’t think Gatsby cares, however. The faces he meets (with the exception of The One), don’t matter to him at all. So, I think his coping mechanism is the “old sport” moniker he gives everyone. The first time, it might make you feel like you are his pal, a friend, a good buddy, but the fifth or tenth time? That would get downright annoying. Only one person in the novel ever calls him on it. The rest are either too blinded by all the “glitter” or, like Nick, too polite to mention it.
So, are you enjoying your trip through this novel,
dear reader old sport?