* HarsherInHindsight: The depiction of mental illness, depression and suicide, since [[AuthorExistenceFailure Wallace erased his own map]].
* HilariousInHindsight: That part about Orin getting onto to Boston University's football team? One year after the novel was published, the university [[http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1011495/ disbanded its football team]].
* NightmareFuel: In the first scene, the main character hears himself communicating completely calmly and rationally with those around him. Those around him hear him screaming in horrific pain, convulsing like he's absolutely lost his mind, to the point where they call an ambulance. And, Orin and the cockroaches.
** [[spoiler: After the [[{{Gorn}} lengthy]] description of Randy Lenz's [[KickTheDog nightly walks]], Wallace makes absolutely sure to add the detail that [[ParanoiaFuel there are no locks on any of the doors in Ennet House]].]]