Thursday, December 4, 2008

Wallace Shawn, Designated Mourner

There are ideas that are almost like formalized greetings. Everyone agrees with them, but we keep repeating them anyway, all day long. Everyone keeps saying, for example, "Human motivation is very complex." But if you stop and think about it, you have to admit that human motivation is not complex, or it's complex only in the same sense that the motivation of a fly is complex. In other words, if you try to swat a fly, it moves out of the way. And humans are the same. They step aside when they sense something coming about to hit them in the face. Of course, you do see the occasional exception-- the person who just stands there and waits for the blow.

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