Hey, I didn’t say it. Bill Hicks said it in his 1993 special Revelations (clip here), a dark yet endlessly quotable hour in which that bit lands with particular force because of structure as much as theme. It stands apart because it contains no punchline. Laughs trickle out, then sheepishly flatline, then erupt ecstatically each time Bill insists that, no, really, he means what he’s saying. This is stand-up but there’s no joke here: Human beings whose job is to manipulate your sense of need and take your dollars have no redeeming value.
Remarking on what really makes a person a writer, Christopher Hitchens offered that it comes down to whether the individual needs to write, or merely wants to. The true writer will find that something goes haywire within if the itch goes unscratched; writing “must be that without which you could not live.” The pen might as well be an internal organ.
I love reading. I read so much; reading sustains me in a way very little else does in life. I feel terrible on dating apps juxtaposed to all the people who list rock climbing, hiking the AT, and underwater basket weaving as active and exotic hobbies. I have even found a way to make a career of interacting with books. Yet even I have a limit.