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Walker Percy Wednesday 121

I experience the sensation that the world really ended in 1916 and that we’ve been living in a dream ever since. These good fellows have spent their entire lives working, raising families, fighting Nazis, worrying about Communism, yet they’ve really been zapped by something else. We haven’t been zapped by the Nazis and the Communists.…

Walker Percy Wednesday 120

“Hear this, Tom. I’ll make it short and sweet. We’re not talking about some bush-league medical project—fluoridating water to cure tooth decay. We’re not even talking about curing AIDS. We’re not even talking medicine, Tom. We’re talking about the decay of the social fabric. The American social fabric. I’m not telling you anything you don’t…

Walker Percy Wednesday 118

I look at him steadily. “That every society has a right to protect itself against its enemies. That a society like an organism has a right to survive. 00000 I know that you work with dreams. What I want to ask you is this: Is there something which is not a dream or even a…

Walker Percy Wednesday 117

“Tom, would you like to hear my own private theory of the nature of man?” The nature of man. I can’t stand theories about the nature of man. I’d rather listen to Robin Leach and watch Barnaby Jones. “Well, actually I think we’d better track down Lucy—” But he’s got going on his theory of…

Walker Percy Wednesday 116

He lights up. “Tom, it’s beautiful. It’s beautiful because it’s so simple. All great scientific breakthroughs are simple. One change and presto, all the old hassles, twelve-year-olds getting knocked up, contraceptives in school, abortion, child abuse—all the old political and religious hassles are simply bypassed, left behind. Did you ever notice that the great controversies…

Walker Percy Wednesday 115

Upriver and into West Feliciana, the first low loess bluffs of St. Francisville, and into the pleasant deciduous hills where Audubon lived with rich English planters, painted the birds, and taught dancing for a living. Out of the hills and back toward the river and Grand Mer, the great widening of the river into a…

Walker Percy Wednesday 114

“Thus, these word signs have been evacuated, deprived of meaning something real. Real persons. Not so with Jews.” ***** “Since the Jews were the original chosen people of God, a tribe of people who are still here, they are a sign of God’s presence which cannot be evacuated. Try to find a hole in that…

Walker Percy Wednesday 113

“He told me that he had—ah—discovered a mathematical proof of what God’s will is, that is, what we must do in these dangerous times.” ***** There was more excitement in prison, more argument, more clash of ideology. In Alabama we were polarized every which way, into pro-nukes and anti-nukes, liberals and conservatives, atheists and believers,…

Walker Percy Wednesday 112

A lot happened to her. She married, not a Notre Dame boy, but Buddy Dupre, Ed’s brother, a pleasant Tulane DKE, not merely pleasant but charming, the sort of Southern charmer who drinks too much. He had that sweetness and funniness which alcoholic Southern men often have, as if they cannot bear for the world not…