Other measurable things

2011/04/07 § 2 Comments

I finished Breakfast of Champions
(or Goodbye, Blue Monday!) today. I really really liked it, instant favourite! Vonnegut’s sarcastic ways of portraying the US and the world, as if to someone without knowledge, is wonderfully engaging. The book is filled with plots from Kilgore Trout’s sci-fi stories and felt-tip pen drawings, and we all know how much I love visual reading. The book was Vonnegut’s 50th birthday gift to himself and marked the end of the depression following Slaughterhouse-5.

The plot of the book is a somewhat random (carefully planned out by the writer, that is) meeting between “two lonesome, skinny, fairly old white men on a planet which was dying fast”. You have to read it, so many wonderful ideas and concepts are presented in the funniest ways. The theme of machines, though, is the most important one throughout the book, at least in my opinion, and especially (other) humans being robots only, while you (/your race, your country, your family, whatever) are the only “real” human beings. No, seriously; such a great book!

 

 

Commence for quotes
He is what he is because of  (…) microscopic amounts of chemicals which he ate or failed to eat on that particular day.

I think I am trying to make my head as empty as it was when I was born onto this damaged planet fifty years ago.

People took such awful chances with chemicals and their bodies because they wanted the quality of their lives to improve.

Their childhoods were over. They were dying now.

They rode in silence for a while, and then the driver made another good point. He said he knew that his truck was turning the atmosphere into poison gas, and that the planet was being turned into pavement so his truck could go anywhere. “So I’m committing suicide,” he said.

“Takes all kinds of people to make up a world,” said Trout.

I was making myself hideously uncomfortable by not narrowing my attention to details of life which were immediately important, and by refusing to believe what my neighbors believed.

They killed themselves by destroying their own environment with yeast shit.

“All you robots want to know why my wife ate Drãno?” Dwayne asked his thunderstruck audience. “I’ll tell you why: She was that kind of machine!”

It is harder to be unhappy when you are eating.

He was a graduate of West Point, a military academy which turned young men into homicidal maniacs for use in war.

Why are so many Americans treated by their government as though their lives were as disposable as paper facial tissue?

Our awareness is all that is alive and maybe sacred in any of us. Everything else about us is dead machinery.
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