New Zarathustra

Quarter of six. Why is my family so redneck? Their values are typically Republican, with a heavy emphasis on the working class. Or maybe I should ask why I’m not another redneck with them. Kate used to joke about her brother in law forbidding books in his house like a working class hero. James next door said that not one book was found in John’s house before James bought it.

Books are symbolic. Bibliophilic people are also intellectual people. Other symbols are eyeglasses and heads shaped like an egg. Those who scorn books may be the ones who dress in outing flannel shirts and cowboy boots and hats; who carry a can of wintergreen in a hip pocket; who drink Jack Daniels; and drive monster pickup trucks. Just as my family fell into one stereotype, I fell for another. It happened by imperceptible degrees when we were in school. Society tailored us to be what we are now. It even told you to listen to “Welcome to the Machine” by Pink Floyd— with a doobie in your hand. All the laws you can obey you can also break according to expectation. People do what is done already. We can even get addicted to alcohol and drugs at a signal from someone. It’s okay to do it because it’s been done before. Even Nietzsche has been done before.

When will people listen to the speeches of a new Zarathustra? But that person is you, dear reader…


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