Are people inherently pricks?
That is the question I have been asking myself this week between reading the news and a very disturbing novel. "Blindness" by Jose Saramago, winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, has a nameless cast of characters who have all been infected with blindness. Suddenly, their vision goes white, and those with whom they have made contact are also likely to become blind. Suddenly. The first man goes blind while driving.
Now, I hate to break it to you, but back cover copy on books isn't written by anyone who has read the book. At most, a freelancer or an editorial assistant has read a few chapters from the beginning and ends and la voila, a tour-de-force is born.
The novel chronicles the fate of a few hundred blind inamtes that have been confined by the government in a mental assylum, where soldiers put food near the door each day, but don't dare come into contact for fear of going blind. So far, the situation has devolved into chaos, but the back cover promises me an uplifting ending.
Kinda like this fellow, who has been riding the same bike around the globe since the 60s, and gets to oh-so-civilized-England, and somebody steals it.