BOOK ONE ~ the rages of innocence

“Travelers are privileged to do the most improper things.” Isabelle Bird

chapter one ~ air time

“I must tell you about the most unusual woman I met on the plane. She sat down, rather crashed herself into the seat beside me, with acres of bags, the most lovely and absurd hat all askew. She was out of breath and apologized hastily for what might have been obnoxious body odor but really all I could smell was the sweetest lilac perfume that seemed somehow all wrapped up in a memory of lemon verbena. I kept forgetting to ask her what exactly it was she was wearing because she kept telling me the most fantastic tales. I really felt quite like that naughty king in the Arabian nights.”

chapter two ~ bad company

“Bad men are interesting. Everybody loves a bad man or is at least intrigued by him. Bad men have such extraordinary power, temporal, actual and spiritual. There would be no books without bad men. Writers and villains make books happen, no?  We define our lives in terms of bad men and we love them. But we loathe bad women. We have no sympathy for them, no compassion for women villains. Therefore all sane women, desiring to be respected, want to be good. A man searching for the respect of his peers is just as likely to earn it through villainy, rather more likely actually, than through sainthood. All good men are crucified on the cross of their own goodness.“ she said. “Good men are boring.”

chapter three ~ syncopated kinesis

“Life is the mind turned inside out.”

chapter four ~ straight A's

“To think, only yesterday I was lounging in a bubble bath, what a fantastic phantasmagorical thought."

chapter five ~ mindfuck

“It is difficult, or nearly impossible, to freely communicate, make love, fight or have sex, with people whose perceived power is greatly different than one’s own."

chapter six ~ temporary insanity/cyclical irresponsibility

“The reason that I feel, contra Tolstoy, that happiness is unique and unhappiness is not, is, first, that there is so much more unhappiness, it blurs the mind into indivisible blocks of meaninglessness. Secondly, unhappiness is contagious and, according to esteemed anthropologists, is a critical bonding force in female subcultures. Inclusion in these groups is often based on shared miseries."

chapter seven ~ champagne sparkling spectacle

“My first memory is of my own imagination.”

chapter eight ~ acceptions prove rules

“He came apart. He told me, in very clear terms, of the hate, the distaste, he had for women. It is so like the phrases and terms you hear when people talk about Blacks, The Irish, Communists, or Faggots, as if one portion of humanity could be held responsible for every haunted act of wretched weakness and loathed impropriety."

chapter nine ~ sounding

“But is virility necessarily violent?"

chapter ten ~ hot potatoes

“Take from the world its substance, break it down violently, teeth mangle its physical form, break it down mechanically into smaller and smaller elements. Saliva flows, soaks the masticating food, sweetens the sensate mouth, flows over the teeth, fills the cavity with energy released from the breakdown of large composited life, fills the warm wet motion full space with life in process of becoming pure energy once again. Sweet juices so tempting that the tongue, intrigued sends the order direct to the brain, “Swallow!"

chapter eleven ~ hopscotch

“Some people will tell you that our culture is cruel to women, that the ruling elite takes away women’s ability to do this and that, but I feel lucky to be outside of American privilege. The cornerstones of American privilege are:  one, trade in your personal identity and your destiny; two, be absorbed into the dominant mind set; three, manipulate the mind set but don’t change the game so, four, cheat and lie. You might end up with money or status. Other people who are playing the game might roll over and let you kick them, hoping you will scratch their stomachs, throw them a bone. The rules get extremely strict when it comes to expressions of self and creative aspects of individuality.”



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copyright 1995