LaMont Chu

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LaMont Chu is an eleven year-old student at the Enfield Tennis Academy, and the Little Buddy of John Wayne. Chu has dreams of going to the professional Show, and his bedroom door is "completely covered with magazines' action-shots of matches" (757). Gerhardt Schtitt criticizes Chu because he ceases "'to seem to give total effort of self since you began with the clipping pictures of great professional figures for your adhesive tape and walls'" (458).


LaMont Chu recognizes that his obsession with the Show is hurting his playing; he states that "he wants to get in the Show so bad it feels like it's eating him alive" (388). In a discussion with Lyle, Chu says that he "won't take risks in tournament matches even when risks are OK or even called for, because he finds he's too scared of losing and hurting his chances for the Show and hype and fame" (388). To this, Lyle notes that "'After the first photograph has been in a magazine, the famous men do not enjoy their photographs in magazines so much as they fear that their photographs will cease to appear in magazines. They are trapped, just as you are" (389). When Chu acknowledges that he is trapped, Lyle states that he "might consider how escape from a cage must surely require, foremost, awareness of the fact of the cage" (389), which Chu does not fully understand.

The idea of "escape from the cage," as LaMont and Lyle see it, is discussed in detail in The Pursuit of Happiness in Infinite Jest.

Back to Infinite Jest.