She said, “There comes a time when everybody has to choose to be a human being or a beast.” I chose but I didn’t find out it wasn’t nice until later. That’s why I didn’t learn arithmetic. I kept sliding lower and lower in my seat until I was sitting on the floor under the table. Crawled around for a long time looking at legs and socks and shoes and finally I couldn’t resist and bit this goldy-pink calf just below the knee in back. There was a lot of yelling and trouble. After that I had to sit up straight and look at the board but I wanted to be crawling around under the table and couldn’t pay attention. There are a lot of people in the world and they are almost all silly and disgusting. If I see too much of them I begin to think I’m like them. Want to die and not see myself again. And they all give me trouble. Just by being there if nothing else. About the most disgusting thing they do is die. Only way to stop that is kill them all off. Turn them all into mud. Stop this awful constant dying. Just blast them all away at once so I can forget about them. But they don’t go away and I don’t have a button. So I have to go away. I always wanted to go away but I knew too much about consequences. Consequences is why the little man runs down the track in front of the train instead of jumping out of the way. He doesn’t know what the consequences would be. He doesn’t know what’s to either side of the tract and he’s running too fast to look. But he’s got to come to the point where he jumps anyway, regardless of the consequences. Or maybe he doesn’t. But I do.
Katherine Dunn 1971