When Man Becomes Mayonnaise

The elevator operator was a small ancient Negro whose name was Lyman Enders Knowles. Knowles was insane, I’m almost sure—offensively so, in that he grabbed his own behind and cried, “Yes, yes!” whenever he felt that he’d made a point.

“Hello, fellow anthropoids and lily pads and paddlewheels,” he said to dr. mayoMiss Faust and me. “Yes, yes!”

“First floor, please,” said Miss Faust coldly.

All Knowles had to do to close the door and get us to the first floor was to press a button, but he wasn’t going to do that yet. He wasn’t going to do it, maybe, for years.

“Man told me,” he said, “that these here elevators was Mayan architecture. I never knew that till today. And I says to him, ‘What’s that make me—mayonnaise?’ Yes, yes! And while he was thinking that over, I hit him with a question that straightened him up and made him think twice as hard! Yes, yes!

“I said to him,” said Knowles, “‘This here’s a re-search laboratory. Re-search means look again, don’t it? Means they’re looking for something they found once and it got away somehow, and now they got to re-search for it? How come they got to build a building like this, with mayonnaise elevators and all, and fill it with all these crazy people? What is it they’re trying to find again? Who lost what?’ Yes, yes!”

—Kurt Vonnegut, Cat’s Cradle

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5 Responses to “When Man Becomes Mayonnaise”


  1. 1 Miep O'Brien March 17, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    See, this is what’s wrong with this culture, always trying to find things. We’d be much better off working on not being found.

  2. 2 Miep O'Brien March 18, 2013 at 1:33 am

    Also, yes, you are beautiful, blueness.

    I am concerned about the possibility of your circling the drain.

    I am so sorry about your brother’s suicide.

    That must have been incredibly difficult. I had much-loved stepbrother kill himself around 1990. Fucked us all way up six ways from Sunday. Took years to get past it. But you never do. You never do.

    Love,

    Miep

  3. 4 Miep O'Brien March 18, 2013 at 2:09 am

    I think this is a nice blog. But I have Issues. Such as I am so fucking tired of this culture that I don’t know what to do with it. I used to to graffitti the hell out of stairwells and hacksaw off padlocks to Roofs. I don’t know where to go from there. I am Lost. It is Hard.

    • 5 bluenred March 18, 2013 at 6:59 am

      “The earth is mostly just a boneyard. But pretty in the sunlight.”

      —Augustus McCrae

      Tagging and hacksawing just adds to the general vandalism.


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