Something Happened – Joseph Heller
* there is one typist in our department who is going crazy slowly and has all of us afraid of her.
* My act of rebellion would be absorbed like rain on an ocean and leave no trace. I would not cause a ripple.
*Unmarried men are not wanted in the Sales Department, not even widowers, for the company has learned from experience that it is difficult and dangerous for unmarried salesmen to mix socially with prominent executives and their wives or participate with them in responsible civic affairs. (Too many of the wives of these prominent and very successful men are no more satisfied with their marital situation than are their husbands.) If a salesman’s wife dies and he is not ready to remarry, he is usually moved into an administrative position after several months of mourning. Bachelors are never hired for the sales force, and salesmen who get divorced, or whose wives die, know they had better remarry or begin looking ahead toward a different job.
(Red Parker has been a widower too long and is getting into trouble for that and for his excessive drinking. He is having too good a time.)
* The company has a policy about getting laid. It’s okay.
* Tom was twenty-one years old and had a big blond married woman of almost twenty-eight who let him make love to her. I took it for granted that when I was twenty-one, I would have a big blond married woman of twenty-eight who would let me make love to her on a desk also. I thought such women came along automatically.
It never happened, of course.
* All I got when I was twenty-one was the right to vote
* So what? What if it all is true? (My mother wasn’t much better; and my father was much worse, ha, ha. He was hardly around at all after he died. Ha, ha.) Maybe it is my fault that she does so poorly at school and lacks confidence in herself and bites her fingernails and doesn’t sleep well, and even my fault that she eats too much and is heavy and is having a boring and excruciating time of it. But, so what? (I’ve got my excuses ready too.) What good does it do anyone to know that? Even if I agree (and I often do agree, just to frustrate and befuddle her), it doesn’t change anything, it doesn’t make anything easier for her. So why must she dwell on it? It has grown so boring by now — it never leads anywhere — just plain boring to the point of maddening irritation (which is obviously all she hopes to achieve with me now, all she feels now that she can obtain from life, to goad me ruthlessly into these states of furious and intolerable resentment in which I stammer, spit, bellow, and launch myself into blustering denunciations that cannot be concluded with dignified grammatical coherence, and which are enough to bring that detestable, unmistakable glint of baleful satisfaction into her cunning eyes).
(What does she want from me?)
“You know,” she might begin with deceptive tranquility, “I really don’t think I have anything in common with Mommy anymore. And I don’t think you have, either. I don’t know why you still stay married to her. I know you’re incompatible.”
(She doesn’t even know what incompatible means.)
* My wife feels responsible for my bad dreams; I am pleased she does, make no effort to exonerate her, and feel she really is to blame when I have one. I use them to punish her. I keep digressing to me. I keep digressing from me. I wish my wife had bigger tits..