Too many people talk about the weather, and not enough people talk about agriculture. When somebody says to me, “Beautiful weather we’re having,” I always reply, “Irrigation and crop rotation.
A number of people who I’ve talked to about this assume that I got into a fight with the cops. (Because of, y'know, the militant politics.) I actually had an audience member come up to me once and ask me if I paid taxes. Of course I pay taxes! I pay taxes for exactly the same reason that I hate paying taxes — because I think my government is terrifying and stupid. I don't need the IRS kicking my door down and taking my meticulously alphabetized collection of Tijuana bibles.
I like talking about people who don't have any power and it seems like some of the least powerful people in the United States are the migrant workers who come and do our work and don't have any rights as a result. And yet we still invite them to come here, and at the same time ask them to leave.
So many people talk about the Golden Gate bridge, but I would bet they haven't seen the new Sava River Bridge. It has long metal ropes suspending it, like a gigantic angel's harp waiting for god's fingers to reach down and pluck the first chords, to send a vibration of relief and love into the heart of Belgrade.
People talk about grief as if it's kind of an unremittingly awful thing, and it is. It is painful, but it's a very, very interesting sort of thing to go through, and it really helps you out. At the end of the day, it gets you through because you have to reform your relationship, and you have to figure out a way of getting to the future.
How many times have you tried to talk to someone about something that matters to you, tried to get them to see it the way you do? And how many of those times have ended with you feeling bitter, resenting them for making you feel like your pain doesn't have any substance after all?Like when you've split up with someone, and you try to communicate the way you feel, because you need to say the words, need to feel that somebody understands just how pissed off and frightened you feel. The problem is, they never do. "Plenty more fish in the sea," they'll say, or "You're better off without them," or "Do you want some of these potato chips?" They never really understand, because they haven't been there, every day, every hour. They don't know the way things have been, the way that it's made you, the way it has structured your world. They'll never realise that someone who makes you feel bad may be the person you need most in the world. They don't understand the history, the background, don't know the pillars of memory that hold you up. Ultimately, they don't know you well enough, and they never can. Everyone's alone in their world, because everybody's life is different. You can send people letters, and show them photos, but they can never come to visit where you live.Unless you love them. And then they can burn it down.
People talk about the beauty of the spring, but I can't see it. The trees are brown and bare, slimy with rain. Some are crawling with new purple hairs. And the buds are bulging like tumorous acne, and I can tell that something wet, and soft, and cold, and misshapen is about to be born. And I am turning into a vampire.