Edsel B. Grimshaw is the writer of a scathing review of Ship of Theseus in 1950. He is mentioned in the marginalia by Eric Husch on p18 and p106 as hating a particular scene – the same scene mentioned in the review. The review itself is part of a post-production clue tweeted by author Doug Dorst on December 19.
Why the name Grimshaw? Here are a few ideas.
A grimshaw is a conundrum in chess that occurs when two black pieces mutually interfere with each other to block a checkmate by white.
A real-world grimshaw appears to occur in Ship of Theseus on p453 in the climax. As Vévoda attempts to aim his pistol at the monkey (who is draining the wine barrels by removing the bungs), the following scene occurs.
One of Vévoda’s guests chases the monkey—pointlessly, as the monkey never lets him get close, and the primary effect of his pursuit is to interfere with the raging Vévoda’s sight lines.
Shortly afterward, Vévoda is “checkmated” by S and Sola.
I’m not sure of the point of this, but it seems to me there is an emphasis on evil stumbling over itself before being defeated. Or are we simply being reminded that in the battle between good and evil, good does not defeat the evil one by killing him – only by placing him in a position where he has no moves left?
There is also a connection to Gödel, Escher, Bach. Note that Edsel B. Grimshaw’s initials are EBG. These are the same initials of a fictitious author mentioned in Gödel, Escher, Bach known as Egbert B. Gebstadter.
It seems that the name Edsel B. Grimshaw (EBG) is a play on Douglas Hofstadter’s fictional character to get us thinking about the Eternal Golden Brain (EGB) in Gödel, Escher, Bach (GEB).