PSYCHE. To cite only one example where the question has to be raised: if I were putting on an act and this were all in my head and it's totally a neurotic fantasy, what is the payoff? Or, more precisely, what kind of a pervert/invert self-thwarting wacko would I have to be? Back in my housebound days of a few years ago, the brother of my roommate was to star in a new George Coates performance piece, and my roommate and I were to attend the opening night. I thought it would be a blast to know someone in the cast and go to the party afterwards and I was really looking forward to this outing, not the least of which was because it was accessible by the mass transit of electric trolleys, and not solely through sitting in cars, whose plastics and heaters were making me so sick. So I arrived—and woe is me, between the sets and carpet that had been freshly painted and the new electronics (new plastic sets me off very badly), I began to react within minutes of walking within the door; I had to excuse myself before the curtain went up, stumble onto the J Church Muni to take me home, crawl out of my clothes and take a long shower—and lie on the couch and tremble and hyperventilate, furious at myself for being so feeble and such a spazz and so unable to participate in the life of the world, and the things that could give me pleasure. I felt impotent rage at my wacked-out immune system, and at the world that so constructs itself around compounds that aren't good for any living things.

Back Next