Excerpt from V by Thomas Pynchon
Mon Apr 25, 2022 17:12

"You are a nasty girl," said Schoenmaker, "and so pretty, too. Why yell at me, all I am is one plastic surgeon. Not a psychoanalyst. Maybe someday there will be special plastic surgeons who can do brain jobs too, make some young kid an Einstein, some girl an Eleanor Roosevelt. Or even make people act less nasty. Till then, how do I know what goes on inside. Inside has nothing to do with the chain."
"You set up another chain." She was trying not to yell. "Changing them inside sets up another chain which has nothing to do with germ plasm.
You can transmit characteristics outside, too. You can pass along an attitude . . ."
"Inside, outside," he said, "you're being inconsistent, you lose me."
"I'd like to," she said, rising. "I have bad dreams about people like you."
"Have your analyst tell you what they mean," he said.
"I hope you keep dreaming." She was at the door, half-turned to him. "My bank balance is big enough so I don't get disillusioned." he said.
Being the kind of girl who can't resist an exit line: "I heard about a disillusioned plastic surgeon," she said, "who hung himself." She was gone, stomping out past the mirrored clock, out into the same wind that moved the pine tree, leaving behind the soft chins, warped noses and facial scars of what she feared was a sort of drawing-together or communion.

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Alpha... Delta... Gamma... Everybody’s smoked.