Harlan Ellison · 48 pages
Rating: (2.2K votes)
“Why let them order you about? Why let them tell you to hurry and scurry like ants or maggots? Take your time! Saunter a while! Enjoy the sunshine, enjoy the breeze, let life carry you at your own pace! Don't be slaves of time, it's a helluva way to die, slowly, by degrees...down with the Ticktockman!”
“Jelly beans! Millions and billions of purples and yellows and greens and licorice and grape and raspberry and mint and round and smooth and crunchy outside and soft-mealy inside and sugary and bouncing jouncing tumbling clittering clattering skittering fell on the heads and shoulders and hardhats and carapaces of the Timkin works, tinkling on the slidewalk and bouncing away and rolling about underfoot and filling the sky on their way down with all the colors of joy and childhood and holidays, coming down in a steady rain, a solid wash, a torrent of color and sweetness out of the sky from above, and entering a universe of sanity and metronomic order with quite-mad coocoo newness. Jelly beans!”
“And so it goes. And so it goes. And so it goes. And so it goes goes goes goes goes tick tock tick tock tick tock and one day we no longer let time serve us, we serve time and we are slaves of the schedule, worshipers of the sun's passing, bound into a life predicated on restrictions because the system will not function if we don't keep the schedule tight.”
“Don't come back till you have him!" the Ticktockman said, very quietly, very sincerely, extremely dangerously.
They used dogs. They used probes. They used cardioplate crossoffs. They used teepers. They used bribery. They used stiktytes. They used intimidation. They used torment. They used torture. They used finks. They used cops. They used search&seizure. They used fallaron. They used betterment incentive. They used fingerprints. They used the Bertillon system. They used cunning. They used guile. They used treachery. They used Raoul Mitgong, but he didn't help much. They used applied physics. They used techniques of criminology.
And what the hell: they caught him.”
“You're a nonconformist.”
“That didn’t used to be a felony.”
“It is now. Live in the world around you.”
“Master Timekeeper: Not everyone thinks so. Most people enjoy order.
Harlequin: I don't, and most of the people I know don't."
Master Timekeeper: That's not true. How do you think we caught you?
Harlequin: I'm not interested.
Master Timekeeper: A girl named pretty Alice told us who you were.
Harlequin: That's a lie.
Master Timekeeper: It's true. You unnerve her. She wants to belong, she wants to conform,
I'm going to turn you off.”
“What in Bursin’s holy name is that?” he snarled.
If it were possible to die of embarrassment, Martise was sure she wouldn’t survive the next few minutes. “I was singing.”
His eyebrows rose almost to his hairline. “Singing. Is that what you call it? It sounded like someone was torturing a cat.”
“I thought I might work faster if I sang.” She wiped the perspiration from her forehead with a gloved hand and regretted the action. The swipe of citrus oil she’d left on her skin burned. Cael continued to howl, and a door shut with a bang.
"That will be Gurn coming to rescue us from whatever demon he thinks is attacking." The branch supporting Silhara creaked as he adjusted his stance and leaned closer to her. “Tell me something, Martise.” A leaf slapped him in the eye, and he ripped it off its twig with an irritated snap. “How is it that a woman, blessed with a voice that could make a man come, sings badly enough to frighten the dead?”
She was saved from having to answer the outlandish question by the quick thud of running footsteps. Silhara disappeared briefly from view when he bent to greet their visitor. Unfortunately, his answers to Gurn’s unspoken questions were loud and clear. “That was Martise you heard. She was…singing.
“Trust me, I’m not jesting. You can unload your bow.” His next indignant response made her smile. “No, I wasn’t beating her! She’s the one tormenting me with that hideous wailing!”
Martise hid her smile when he reappeared before her. His scowl was ferocious. “Don’t sing.” He pointed a finger at her for emphasis. “You’ve scared my dog, my birds and my servant with your yowling.” He paused. “You’ve even managed to scare me.”
“The hours slipped by, and the men and the girls talked and talked as only communists of that wild and irresponsible period could talk when they were omong themselves. They were as preoccupied with their own importance and their revolutionairy tasks as children are with new and engrossing toys. I listened as if under a spell. After all, compared with the tight-lipped conspirators of a later decade, we were like children partaking of a heavy wine.”
“usually sees only at Christmas. At last he reached in and tenderly removed his gift of glass from the carton. “A geranium! I cannot believe it. A pelargonium”
“So why don’t Americans cheat? Because they think that their system is legitimate. People accept authority when they see that it treats everyone equally, when it is possible to speak up and be heard, and when there are rules in place that assure you that tomorrow you won’t be treated radically different from how you are treated today. Legitimacy is based on fairness, voice and predictability, and the U.S. government, as much as Americans like to grumble about it, does a pretty good job of meeting all three standards. Pg. 293”
“Defeat is for the valiant. Only they will know the honour of losing and the joy of winning
I am not here to tell you that defeat is a part of life: we all know that. Only the defeated know Love. Because it is in the realm of love that we fight our first battles – and generally lose.
I am here to tell you that there are people who have never been defeated.
They are the ones who never fought.
They managed to avoid scars, humiliations, feelings of helplessness, as well as those moments when even warriors doubt the existence of God.’’
Manuscript Found In Accra – Paulo Coelho”
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