Summer reading is bad for you

I made a mistake once,

I wanted to own…


The Tralfamadorians in “Slaughter. House Five” feel bad for us. This is how they explain the way we perceive time:

“The guide invited the crowd to imagine that they were looking across a desert at a mountain range on a day that was twinkling bright and clear. They could look at a peak or a bird or a cloud, at a stone right in front of them, or even down into a canyon behind them. But among them was this poor Earthling, and his head was encased in a steel sphere which he could never take off. There was only one eyehole through which he could look, and welded to that eyehole were six feet of pipe.

This was only the beginning […] of miseries in metaphor. He is also strapped to a steel lattice which was bolted to a flatcar on rails, and there was no way he could turn his head or touch the pipe. The far end of the pipe rested on a bi-pod which was also bolted to the flatcar. All [the Earthling] could see was the little dot at the end of the pipe. He didn’t know he was on a flatcar, didn’t even know there was anything peculiar about his situation.

“The flatcar sometimes crept, sometimes went extremely fast, often stopped – went uphill, downhill, around curves, along straightaways. Whatever [the poor Earthling] saw through the pipe, he had no choice but to say to himself, “That’s life.”” (115).

And so it goes.


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  1. #1 by William J. Holland on August 3, 2010 - 11:50 pm

    A most interesting eclectic blog. I think you’ll enjoy what I wrote concerning Jane Digby on my blog. I invite you to see what I’m referring to.

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