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Thursday, April 14, 2005

Sand Flea's Plea

Or, rather, the Psammead's wish
1908.  A quote from the world's only recorded encounter with a Psammead (sand fairy), asking a supplicant for one wish of its own: to be forever unmentioned,
'Why, don't you see, if you told grown-ups I should have no peace of my life. They'd get hold of me, and they wouldn't wish silly things like you do, but real earnest things; and the scientific people would hit on some way of making things last after sunset, as likely as not; and they'd ask for a graduated income-tax, and old-age pensions and manhood suffrage, and free secondary education, and dull things like that; and get them, and keep them, and the whole world would be turned topsy-turvy.'
Sadly, it seems that someone found the Psammead, or one of his nearly-extinct brethren and wreaked the very havoc he feared. "...graduated income tax... old-age pensions... manhood suffrage... free secondary education..."  ::shudder::  It's all come to pass.  And on your dime.
The National Day of Mourning is soon upon us...