Walker Percy Wednesday – 1

Yet it was on just such a day as this, an ordinary Wednesday or Thursday, that he felt the deepest foreboding. And when his doctor, seeking to reassure him, suggested that in these perilous times a man might well be entitled to such a feeling, that only the insensitive did not, etc., it made him feel worse than ever. The analyst had got it all wrong. It was not the prospect of the Last Day which depressed him but rather the prospect of living through an ordinary Wednesday morning.

Where he probably goes wrong, mused the engineer sleepily, is in the extremity of his alternatives: God and not-God, getting under women’s dresses and blowing your brains out. Whereas and in fact my problem is how to live from one ordinary minute to the next on a Wednesday afternoon. Has not this been the case with all “religious” people?

A recent study has reported that the incidence of suicide is significantly higher on Wednesdays. Augustine J. Kposowa and Stephanie D’Auria. 2010. Association of temporal factors and suicides in the United States, 2000–2004. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology. Volume 45, Issue 4, pp. 433-445.

Walker Percy, Philosopher