Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.
I consider the state of sleep to be delicate. I am a deep sleeper, but I suffer from occasional insomnia, and when more than one night passes with poor sleep I start getting worried that its about to flare up again.
She was already learning that if you ignore the rules people will, half the time, quietly rewrite them so that they don’t apply to you.
One of my secret weapons in the fight for sleep is audiobooks. And one of my favorites is Terry Pratchett books. They’re perfect. They’re funny and familiar and kind and smart and point on satire. And I’ve read the series so many times that I can recite along with them till I fall asleep, comforted by Nobby Nobb’s lack of humanity or Granny Weatherwax’s excess of it.
Granny was an old-fashioned witch. She didn’t do good for people, she did right by them.
And now Terry’s gone, and I have tears in my eyes. Those books are an overwhelmingly detailed world, full of PEOPLE. Carrot comes the closest to being a perfect hero — but that doesn’t make him the most likable. I love Carrot, with his steady, simple outlook: arresting the head of the thieves guild for stealing, putting the city ahead of the woman he loves with the note that
Personal is not the same as important.
But given the choice between him and Vimes, I think Vimes is the better choice a thousand percent of the time. Carrot may be the perfect hero, but there are a lot of flawed ones. Moist Von Lipwig, an conman to his soul, rises up. Even Rincewind, eternal coward, is often threatened, bullied and manipulated by fate into being a hero. In Discworld, anyone can rise above.
And sin, young man, is when you treat people like things.
I mean, take Vimes. Sam Vimes is passed out in a gutter when he first appears. He’s depressed and alcoholic and stripped of all real power or authority because he won’t stop speaking his mind. The Night Watch is comprised of the dregs of humanity. And yet by the final books of the series (final — god, my heart) — he’s risen to Commander of the Watch and a Lordship. Part of that is his marriage to a very rich and powerful woman, but part of that is because of him. He rises because of who he is, despite myriad circumstances that won’t to pull him down.
Down there – he said – are people who will follow any dragon, worship any god, ignore any inequity. All out of a kind of humdrum, everyday badness. Not the really high, creative loathsomeness of the great sinners, but a sort of mass-produced darkness of the soul. Sin, you might say, without a trace of originality. They accept evil not because they say yes, but because they don’t say no.
And that’s the beauty of Discworld for me. There are HUMANS who are amazing and complicated and who COULD BE ME. I can be more like Granny Weatherwax, or Tiffany Aching, or Polly Perks. There’s such beauty and good will in these books, such a love for the madness that is being human (or dwarf, or troll — take your pick). And, such an understanding of what it is to be a person.
Some humans would do anything to see if it was possible to do it. If you put a large switch in some cave somewhere, with a sign on it saying ‘End-of-the-World Switch. PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH’, the paint wouldn’t even have time to dry.
It’s satire that’s full of heart.
The enemy isn’t men, or women, it’s bloody stupid people and no one has the right to be stupid.
And mine is broken, because it’s the end.