Kurt Vonnegut, various post-humous stories

200px-WhileMortalsSleep“Epizootic”: Insurance men mourn their financial losses now that so many are committing suicide to give their families the big payout.

“Hundred Dollar Kisses”: A recently fired man answers an investigator’s questions are to why he struck his co-worker with a telephone.

Q: What is wrong with the world?

A: Everybody pays attention to pictures of things. Nobody pays attention to things themselves.

“Guardian of the Person”: A guy and his new wife drive home to pick up his inheritance. The uncle who raised him has a drink. The reader scratches his head.

“With His Hand on the Throttle”: Earl neglects his wife and plays with his model trains, to the chagrin of his mom.

(from While Mortals Sleep)

Some of these are like non-supernatural Twilight Zone episodes. I’m having trouble buying in. Like, there’s no way we as a people were as simplistic and stupid as we appear to be in “With His Hand on the Throttle.” Well, outside of bad television. That’s kind of how I feel about everything I’ve read so far from While Mortals Sleep. I liked the doom and gloom of “Epizootic” but the rest have been a little light and silly. There’s a reason Vonnegut never had these stories published.


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