This will give you a sense of where I'm coming from:
It's a typical Wallace performance, at once highly entertaining and highly unsatisfying. He's like an overly enthusiastic high school teacher trying to wow his kids with the idea that literature (or whatever else he's obsessed with) can be fun. He starts with something putatively dry (Dostoevsky, say, or grammar) or something putatively irrelevant (has-been tennis star Tracy Austin's ghostwritten memoir) or something genuinely obscure—the neuroanatomy of lobsters. He quickly establishes authority with vocabulary such as prolegomenous (word No. 3 of the Dostoevsky essay) and Latin abbreviations like q.v. Then, like a salesman closing the deal, he delivers charming setup lines such as this one: "Did you know that U.S. lexicography even had a seamy underbelly?"
The catch is that the deal he's closing has nothing to do with any forthcoming intellectual insight. In this respect, the reader is the bull and Wallace the guy with the red cape. Rather, the deal is simply for the reader to keep reading. The payoff, in other words, is the performance.