She was the intellectual that wrote in language that I could embrace, made me believe I could be a thinker without being a snob. She was the tough cookie that could dish it out and be beautiful and smart and show the boys a thing or two. She made Derrida seem silly but made me fall in love with Barthes. She was a rock when I was ill and I could remind myself that it was not my fault cause Susan said so. I was not a metaphor, and there was no rationalizing cause and effect because of some literary fatal flaw.
Sontag’s work shaped me, I even believe that the conversation has changed because of her. But it’s like the everlasting question what makes a good book and what makes a good movie. All these ruminations are about a life of thought through books. Maybe people will go read her books and think some of the things I thought. Or maybe she changed the conversation enough that the content is dated. We will never know. But I cherish that we got to hang out and ask some of these questions together.