I turned on the radio. I turned it off. I hummed “America the Beautiful.” I wrote a letter to my congressman, mailed it, and waited for his office to blow sky-high. When it didn’t, I sued the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of the Interior, and the secretary who answers the phone. I weaved in and out of traffic, honking my horn and making obscene gestures. I helped an old lady across the street. I saw a cave man on a horse, reading Huckleberry Finn. I attended a secret meeting of a dangerous underground organization. I ate the microfilm and had plastic surgery. I fled before the coming ice age. I wrote, performed in, and attended a play on Broadway. I took the elevator. I had a picnic with a group of Zen Buddhists who claimed to be chickens. I changed my name to Beethoven, lost my hearing, and composed a new symphony, all while waiting for a light. But none of it worked. I still wanted Mary, and missed her.
[From Chapter 13, A Listening Thing]
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