Listen, if I heard shrieks and cries coming from a house and I ran in there and I found a great big broad shouldered whiskey soaked Joe weasel, dragging his wife about by the hair, and over here, two children are unconscious from his blows and kicks and another one screaming in terror, do you think I would apologize for being there? No! I'd knock 7 kinds of pork out of that old hog.
How good is Missouri quarterback Chase Daniel anyway?. . . to me, Daniel's brilliance has nothing to do with the big numbers he puts up more or less every week. Howie Long once gave a great explanation of what it was like to get beat by quarterback legend Joe Montana. He said it was like getting knocked out in a pillow fight. You never felt the blow. And you were all kinds of mad afterward. That's as good as any description of Daniel. . . . So what does Daniel do? Something right. On every play. In chess, grandmasters will tell you that it's the most innocuous-looking moves that are deadliest.
We spend our whole lives worrying about the future, planning for the future, trying to predict the future, as if figuring it out will cushion the blow. But the future is always changing. The future is the home of our deepest fears and wildest hopes. But one thing is certain when it finally reveals itself. The future is never the way we imagined it.
Mock on, mock on, Voltaire, Rousseau! Mock on, mock on: 'Tis all in vain! You throw the sand against the wind, And the wind blows it back again. And every sand becomes a gem Reflected in the beams divine; Blown back they blind the mocking eye, But still in Israel's paths they shine. The atoms of Democritus And Newton's particles of light Are sands upon the Red Sea shore, Where Israel's tents do shine so bright.
But the bottom line is, no matter what, even if I shoot 90 tomorrow, I'm going to enjoy it. Maybe people will say "Oh, he blew it" or whatever. Maybe I'm going to blow it, it's the first time I've ever been there. What do you expect? You know I'm not number one in the world. My knees are going to touch each other on the first tee tomorrow. But let me tell you, I'm going to enjoy it.
The short story is so much about inevitability and this feeling that things always had to be this one way, and I wanted the apocalypses to blow that idea apart. I hope it feels that way. I hope the book invites people to read the stories in order and then, if they feel like it, maybe not read them in order the next time.