I found this hilarious post by Sean Ryan on McSweeney’s today, which suggests the modern equivalents to what some famous literary opening lines. Here are some of my favourites, along with the original for comparison. :) Enjoy! And if you want to read the entire post at Mc Sweeney’s, just click here.

The original opening line of Alice in Wonderland: “Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the bank, and of having nothing to do: once or twice she had peeped into the book her sister was reading, but it had no pictures or conversations in it, `and what is the use of a book,’ thought Alice `without pictures or conversation?”

21st C Equivalent: “Alice was beginning to tire of sitting by her sister on the bank. She took out her iPhone and played Angry Birds for the next three hours.”

The original opening of Pride and Prejudice: “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.”

21st C Equivalent: “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of an internet startup to call his own.”

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The original opening of Moby Dick: “Call me Ishmael.”

21st C Equivalent: “Call me Ishmael_65.”

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21st C Equivalent: “Ours is essentially a tragic age, so we refuse to take it tragically. Videos of sneezing pandas and narcoleptic cats see to that.”

The original opening of Lady Chatterley’s Lover: “Ours is a tragic age, so we refuse to take it tragically.”

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The original opening of In Search of Lost Time: “For a long time I used to go to bed early.”

21st C Equivalent: “For a long time I used to go to bed early, but then my girlfriend bought me an Xbox LIVE Gold membership.”

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The original opening of Metamorphosis: “As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect-like creature.”

21st C Equivalent: “As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams, he found himself transformed into a giant insect. Not literally, obviously. He was playing an MMORPG and this was his avatar.”