Here's an assignment we had to do after reading An Interrogative Mood by Padgett Powell, which is a novel written entirely with questions and I LOVED it. Here's my take, stick with me through this one.
To what do we owe our insanity? Is there a rhyme to this madness? How do we define insanity? How do you? Do you consider a bear who eats its own baby insane? What about people who jump off cliffs with only a rope holding them by a small metal clamp that could possibly break off? Is parkour insane? Do you know what parkour is? Would you consider jumping from ledge to ledge, building to building, with a possibility at anytime to fall to your demise?
Does a lobotomy cure insanity? If you had to get a lobotomy done or an amputation, what would you choose? Would you group geniuses among the insane? Was Albert Einstein insane? If one claims they are insane, can they really be then? Is it not a common trait among the insane to reject that they are in fact insane? What about the few strands of insane people who admit and with pride, claim they are insane? Are those people just self-aware or in fact not insane at all? Can an insane person be self-aware? Would that not result in them being able to put a stop to their insanity if they were self-aware of their insanity?
Do you find it cool to cover most of your body with ink etched on to your skin with a tiny needle? Do piercings mortify you or seduce you? Would you ever shave your head completely bald to where if you took a picture and framed it right, it would look like an egg? What do you think of Floridians? In your mind, do Floridians differ from regular humans or no? Have you ever thought about how weirdly human gorillas are? Does it surprise you to know we have 50% of the same genetic makeup as a banana?
Do you like eating hot sauce with your eggs? What about eggs with your hot sauce? Would you say it is weird or nasty to eat ketchup with plain noodles? Does sour cream sound better or worse? Have you ever eaten something wonderful but thrown up due to an unfortunate circumstance like a stomach bug and never been able to look at that dish the same again?
Have you ever wondered what started the wind, where it got its first push? Does Newton’s law not claim that an object at rest will remain at rest unless a force acts on it? What is the force that acts on wind? Was Newton insane? How does electricity work? Can you explain to me how I talk into a little metal device in my hand in America and my friend in Thailand can hear the words being spoken through their little metal device in real time? How does a CD have music on it? Where do the soundwaves fit on that tiny circular plastic disk? Is there someone who can answer these questions but really answer them and not just give some scientific explanation with numbers?
Do black and white pictures make you feel nostalgic? Are low-rise jeans coming back into style? Do you want them to come back into style? Are you a dog person or a cat person? Do you consider yourself a person? Do you believe a person’s favorite color can say a lot about who they are? Do you get lost in Ikea, but a good lost where you don’t want to come out or a bad lost which makes you question your house’s whole layout? I almost forgot to ask, have you decided if you are insane yet? Is it up to you to decide or a psychiatrist? Or would that be a therapist? Or both? Or no one but a priest could decide?
Have you ever driven so long on a highway that you become lost in time and space? Have you ever felt extremely disconnected with your body, like you weren’t in control but your body knew exactly what to do and say to whatever question or thing someone said to you? Do bodies then have an auto-pilot mode? Would you want to learn how to turn that auto-pilot on or off, if you have not already, or why do you think it is even useful, or maybe it isn’t useful at all? Have you ever seen a knife and for a second the thought crossed your mind to take that knife and plunge it into your finger? Have you ever been hiking and looked over the edge of a cliff and thought what if I fell? What if I pushed myself? Did you know that it takes the same amount of force to bite a carrot and to bite your finger off? Does that make you think about maybe biting your finger off?
Have you daydreamed in a very serious setting, perhaps working in your 9-5 job in your cubical, about something sexual? Have you ever looked at someone and said “thank God I don’t have their life?” Have you ever looked at someone and wished to have their life? If you were asked to trade places with a child in a war-torn country, to live their life but knowing you get to save their life if you trade places, would you? What if that child was your long-lost sister, would that change your answer? Have you ever experienced the urge to scream something obscene in public? What about in church? Do you go to church? Do you believe in organized religion? If you believe in a heaven or a hell, which one do you think you are going to?
What happens when we die? Do we cross over into a new world of peace and heaven and God? Or do we rot in the ground, our souls forever trapped in our dead body, so we are forced to spend eternity lying there, thinking about how we have to spend eternity doing nothing? Do our souls go into the big pot of all souls and find another vessel in another world to occupy? Do we become a star? Have astrologists forever misinterpreted stars as balls of light that are millions of light years away when in fact, they are human souls?
What’s your zodiac sign? Do you believe in horoscopes? If a girl asked you your zodiac sign on the second date, would that be a sign to stop dating her or to proceed? What is your preferred method of dating? Do you enjoy dating apps? Do you have a fear of dating apps because of serial killer documentaries? Are serial killers insane? Do you consider someone like Ed Kemper insane, who murdered and violated female hitchhikers and his mother? Would it surprise you to find the court found him sane in his trial in 1973? Do we maybe have the definition of sanity incorrect? Or do we only claim insanity or sanity when it is beneficial for us or for society or the law? Is it possible to be sane and be a horribly bad person, perhaps a serial killer? Or does there need to be a fraction of insanity claimed?
Are people naturally evil or are they products of their environment? If you answered products of their environment, then by this claim, are people then created insane because of their environment, hence society? If society is the cause of insanity, how do we fix it? Do we get rid of society all together? What is society? Do we get rid of humanity? Are you insane yet? Is it really all that bad to be insane?
What if we put on one planet all the insane people and on another planet all the sane? What would the insane planet look like? What would the sane planet look like? Would you consider calling one heaven and one hell? Which one would be which?
Do my intrusive thoughts bother you? Have you had intrusive thoughts? Do you know you’d be lying if you said you never have? The question is, who are you lying to? Me or yourself?
Thanks for reading everyone! I appreciate each and everyone of you for taking the time out of your busy lives to read what I have to say. I pray my words can spark a thought, a lost hope, or a will to reach for the stars inside of you.
I'll link my book insta page which has short reviews, cute quotes, and giveaways.
Picture is not mine, wish it was.