Do you understand what I’m saying?”shouted Moist. “You can’t just go around killing people!””Why Not? You Do.” The golem lowered his arm.”What?” snapped Moist. “I do not! Who told you that?””I Worked It Out. You Have Killed Two Point Three Three Eight People,” said the golem calmly.”I have never laid a finger on anyone in my life, Mr Pump. I may be–– all the things you know I am, but I am not a killer! I have never so much as drawn a sword!””No, You Have Not. But You Have Stolen, Embezzled, Defrauded And Swindled Without Discrimination, Mr Lipvig. You Have Ruined Businesses And Destroyed Jobs. When Banks Fail, It Is Seldom Bankers Who Starve. Your Actions Have Taken Money From Those Who Had Little Enough To Begin With. In A Myriad Small Ways You Have Hastened The Deaths Of Many. You Do Not Know Them. You Did Not See Them Bleed. But You Snatched Bread From Their Mouths And Tore Clothes From Their Backs. For Sport, Mr Lipvig. For Sport. For The Joy Of The Game.
Now do you understand why I'm interested in you? You're a locked door, sweetheart. You give no one a key and you never answer the door when anyone knocks...Ah, but sometimes, sometimes I get a peek through the keyhole and what I find there...It's like glimpsing you as you're stripping. Underneath all of that darkness is something hungry, something desperate, something, oh, so deliciously vulnerable.
Maybe if I'd agreed to do the debutante thing like she wanted. Or taken up pageants instead of riding jump bikes with a bunch of grungy boys. I'd always tell her, why can't I do both? Who says you have to be either smart or pretty, or into girly stuff or sports? Life shouldn't be about the either/or. We're capable of more than that, you know?
Like the most of you, I was raised among people who knew - who were certain. They did not reason or investigate. They had no doubts. They knew that they had the truth. In their creed there was no guess — no perhaps. They had a revelation from God. They knew the beginning of things. They knew that God commenced to create one Monday morning, four thousand and four years before Christ. They knew that in the eternity — back of that morning, he had done nothing. They knew that it took him six days to make the earth — all plants, all animals, all life, and all the globes that wheel in space. They knew exactly what he did each day and when he rested. They knew the origin, the cause of evil, of all crime, of all disease and death.At the same time they knew that God created man in his own image and was perfectly satisfied with his work... They knew all about the Flood -- knew that God, with the exception of eight, drowned all his children -- the old and young -- the bowed patriarch and the dimpled babe -- the young man and the merry maiden -- the loving mother and the laughing child -- because his mercy endureth forever. They knew too, that he drowned the beasts and birds -- everything that walked or crawled or flew -- because his loving kindness is over all his works. They knew that God, for the purpose of civilizing his children, had devoured some with earthquakes, destroyed some with storms of fire, killed some with his lightnings, millions with famine, with pestilence, and sacrificed countless thousands upon the fields of war. They knew that it was necessary to believe these things and to love God. They knew that there could be no salvation except by faith, and through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.Then I asked myself the question: Is there a supernatural power -- an arbitrary mind -- an enthroned God -- a supreme will that sways the tides and currents of the world -- to which all causes bow?I do not deny. I do not know - but I do not believe. I believe that the natural is supreme - that from the infinite chain no link can be lost or broken — that there is no supernatural power that can answer prayer - no power that worship can persuade or change — no power that cares for man.Is there a God?I do not know.Is man immortal?I do not know.One thing I do know, and that is, that neither hope, nor fear, belief, nor denial, can change the fact. It is as it is, and it will be as it must be.We can be as honest as we are ignorant. If we are, when asked what is beyond the horizon of the known, we must say that we do not know. We can tell the truth, and we can enjoy the blessed freedom that the brave have won. We can destroy the monsters of superstition, the hissing snakes of ignorance and fear. We can drive from our minds the frightful things that tear and wound with beak and fang. We can civilize our fellow-men. We can fill our lives with generous deeds, with loving words, with art and song, and all the ecstasies of love. We can flood our years with sunshine — with the divine climate of kindness, and we can drain to the last drop the golden cup of joy.
I shall decide what I do. If you say my work is fighting, or healing, or exploring, or whatever you say, I'll always be thinking about it, and if I end up doing that, I'll feel resentful because it'll feel as I didn't have a choice, and if I don't do it, I'll feel guilty because I should. Whatever I do, I will choose it, no one else.
I'm so glad you're okay.""So, how do we celebrate my okayness? It's my day off. Let's go crazy. Glow-in-the-dark bowling?""No""I'll let you use the kiddie ball.""Shut up. I do NOT need the kiddie ball.""The way you bowl, I think you might."He grabbed her in an exaggerated formal dance pose and whirled her around, backpack and all, which didn't make her any more graceful. "Ballroom dancing?""Are you INSANE?""Hey, girls who tango are hot.""You think I'm not hot because I don't tango?"He dropped the act. Shane was a smart boy. "I think you are too hot for ballroom or bowling. So you tell me. What do you want to do? And don't say study.
I often ask, "What do you want to work at? If you have the chance. When you get out of school, college, the service, etc." Some answer right off and tell their definite plans and projects, highly approved by Papa. I'm pleased for them* but it's a bit boring, because they are such squares. Quite a few will, with prompting, come out with astounding stereotyped, conceited fantasies, such as becoming a movie actor when they are "discovered" "like Marlon Brando, but in my own way." Very rarely somebody will, maybe defiantly and defensively, maybe diffidently but proudly, make you know that he knows very well what he is going to do; it is something great; and he is indeed already doing it, which is the real test. The usual answer, perhaps the normal answer, is "I don't know," meaning, "I'm looking; I haven't found the right thing; it's discouraging but not hopeless." But the terrible answer is, "Nothing." The young man doesn't want to do anything. I remember talking to half a dozen young fellows at Van Wagner's Beach outside of Hamilton, Ontario; and all of them had this one thing to say: "Nothing." They didn't believe that what to work at was the kind of thing one wanted. They rather expected that two or three of them would work for the electric company in town, but they couldn't care less, I turned away from the conversation abruptly because of the uncontrollable burning tears in my eyes and constriction in my chest. Not feeling sorry for them, but tears of frank dismay for the waste of our humanity (they were nice kids). And it is out of that incident that many years later I am writing this book.
I want to thank you so much for what you said two weeks ago. You see, I was walking back from the grave site where I just buried my son, and while I was walking home I was trying to figure out how I was going to kill myself. You’re kind words stop me from doing that, and I want to thank you. From 'Fillossofee: Messages From a Grandfather' by Robert Gately
Phoebe asked me, "Tell me, what do you think of the afterlife?"I was a bit nonplussed. I had no idea what she thought, but I knew that the question must be of greater interest to someone of her age than to me. But our conversation had been completely honest, and before I could speak, honesty and tact had joined hands in my answer. "I have no faith at all," I said, "but sometimes I have hope."I rather think," she replied, "that total annihilation is the most comfortable position."I was shaken. The horse clopped on. The children laughed behind us.When I die," she said, "I don't expect to see any of my loved ones again. I'll just become a part of all this." She waved her hand at the surrounding countryside. "That's all right with me.
You know what I was thinking about on my way home? How different my life would be if you’d made that gash a little deeper. Or how different yours would be if I’d vaulted myself off a roof nine years ago. Do you ever think about things like that? Like, if either you or I wouldn’t have made it, where would the other one be right now? It was something I thought about all the time: how death changes every remaining moment for those still living.
All I'm telling you to do is to be smart about it. Know that if this man isn't looking for a serious relationship, you're not going to change his mind just because you two are going on dates and being intimate. You could be the most perfect woman on the Lord's green earth-you're capable of interesting conversation, you cook a mean breakfast, you hand out backrubs like sandwiches, you're independent (which means, to him, that you're not going to be in his pockets)-but if he's not ready for a serious relationship, he going to treat you like sports fish.
You can't make me do anything. I'm an adult. And I'm much stronger than you.""Upper body strength isn't everything; I have wiles.""Not really.""Yes, I do. I'm a woman. Women have wiles.""Some women. It's not like every woman is born wily.""If I don't have wiles, she said, "how come I can get you to do most anything I want?""You don't get me to do anything. I just do things. Because I love you.""Oh.""Christ, Gerogie, don't sound so disappointed.
What do you expect? Think we were sent into the world to have a soft time and what is it? Float on flowery beds of ease? Think Man was just made to be happy?- Why not? Though I've never discovered anybody that knew what the deuce Man really was made for!- Well, we know not just in the Bible alone, but it stands to reason a man who doesn't buckle down and do his duty, even if it does bore him sometimes, is nothing but a... well, he's simply a weakling. Mollycoddle, in fact! And what do you advocate? Come down to cases! If a man is bored by his wife, do you seriously mean he has a right to chuck her and take a sneak, or even kill himself?- Good Lord, I don't know what 'rights' a man has! And I don't know the solution of boredom. If I did, I'd be the one philosopher that had the cure for living. But I do know that about ten times as many people find their lives dull, and unnecessarily dull, as ever admit it; and I do believe that if we busted out and admitted it sometimes, instead of being nice and patient and loyal for sixty years, and then nice and patient and dead for the rest of eternity, why, maybe, possibly, we might make life more fun.