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07/26/2007 Archived Entry: "Quote from "Crazy Time" (definition of sanity)"

THIS QUOTE IS FROM A MARVELOUS 1988 SF NOVEL, Crazy Time, by Kate Wilhelm. You (and I) may come from a different political orientation than Wilhelm. But gotta appreciate the sentiment.

(The person having this revelation is a psychologist who specializes in working with people who hate their jobs.)

Sanity was behaving within the norms tacitly established by society. ...

Sanity was accumulating debt and paying it off and accumulating more. Sanity was wearing a green apron and support hose and working in a diner for three thirty-five an hour and smiling at the customers. Sanity was pretenting things would get better tomorrow, next week, next year. Sanity was pretending there was no beast inside roaring and searing, tormented and tormenting. Sanity was being firm with clients and telling them there was self-esteem in standing on an assembly line all day putting a gidget in a gadget; and it was putting the damn gidget in the damn gadget and asking someone else to confirm that it was all right to do that. Sanity was training to be able to help people deny the existence of the beast, and it was training to learn how to ignore its cries and bellows of outrage and hurt.

It was accepting rush-hour traffic and too many horns and poisoned food and too many wars and deaths and killings and armed people shooting other armed people and unarmed people alike and terrorists and more terrorists to fight the terrorists and politicians lying and lying and the war machine rolling forever onward and hunger in the shadow of wealth and too many children and too many people and too many fat religious leaders telling everyone else what their duty was and making everyone hate feeling too fat or too thin or too blond or too dark or too tall or too short or too old or too young and ... pretending it meant the good life and good health and mental well-being and teaching guilt and shame to those who faltered ...

Yep. That's sanity, all right. So to question it all must be ...

Posted by Claire @ 04:13 PM CST

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