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I was able to demonstrate that a lady suffering from frigidity and morning terror and said to have been malconditioned by her overly rigid Methodist parents was in truth terrified by her well-nigh perfect life, really death in life, in Paradise, where all her needs were satisfied and all she had to do was play golf and bridge and sit around the clubhouse watching swim-meets and the Christian baton-twirlers. She woke every morning to a perfect husband, perfect children, a perfect life—and shook like a leaf with morning terror. All efforts to recondition her in a Skinner box failed. I thought they had got it backward, that the frigidity followed from the terror, not vice versa. How can a lady quaking with terror make love to her husband? For the first time I produced my lapsometer in The Pit—yes, the students know about my invention but are not sure whether it is a serious diagnostic tool or a theatrical prop.
. . .
Speak of the devil. A man takes the urinal next to me though there are six urinals and mine is at the end. I frown. Here is a minor breach of the unspoken rules between men for the use of urinals. If there are six urinals and one uses the first the second man properly takes the sixth or perhaps the fifth, maybe the fourth, tolerably the third, but not the second.
. . .
But we say goodbye and shake hands agreeably enough. His is curiously inert, as if all he knew about shaking hands he had learned from watching others shake hands. A heavy smell of sweat neutralized by deodorant pushes to my nostrils.