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¡Loquacious! ¿Moi?

Loquacity—the quality of talking a great deal—is my middle name, so to speak, for I’ve been a talker all my life, and now at 77 I’m beginning to fear there’s no  hope for it except, of  course, the usual one, and by that I mean that my natural demise will do the trick as opposed to an abrupt and violent patricide, say. by a family member, overcome by my endless palaver and driven by despair therefrom to seek surcease therefrom via the family hatchet, which I  have, foolishly some say, kept handy all these  years, hanging on the wall in the garage nearest the door back into the house.

Usually they don’t come at me brandishing a hatchet or whirling a scimitar. No, usually my listeners just get up, mid sentence, and walk out of the room and into the kitchen where they join in any conversation already in progress amongst those who’ve abandoned me earlier in the evening. I pay it no mind; it only serves to renew and redouble my fervor as I continue on with any survivors.  In my own defense I do finally stop talking when the last listener bails out, i.e., I’m not totally without principles, i.e., some of my fellow manic depressives, when faced with this situation, have been known to feign madness or senility and to commence, without dropping a beat, simply mumbling to themselves. I, however, as I’ve implied, do follow a set of rules, or guidelines if  you will, and over the years, after much refinement, have come to realize how invaluable they are. I’m thinking I should make them available to the general public, or at the very least, to the RNC, as an aid to party members seeking reelection.

• Don’t be afraid to repeat  yourself.
• Do make an effort to breathe, but be quick about it lest a listener take advantage of the pause to    interrupt you.
• Avoid all eye contact with your listener(s), as that will only encourage them to butt-in.
• The ricocheting bullet can serve as a good metaphor for this.    Works equally well whether in your  prose or  your      conversations.
• Don’t be afraid to repeat  yourself.
• Ignore any MEGO reactions on the part of your listeners; counter them with a MEGO of your own.
• If your listener attempts to join in in your verbal stream, however briefly, ignore him/her and just keep
talking.
• Never lose sight of the fact that none of what you’re saying needs to make sense; don’t fret over that.
•Your only goal is to free as many words as possible from the fetters of unspoken thought, to fill the
air in the room like confetti from a canon.
• Your train of thought, if any, need not be continuous and is free to jump around—a lot, even.

According to the DSM V, bipolar disorder is often marked by excessive involvement with pleasurable activities, and chatting is right  up there near the top of my list of pleasurable activities, so that sort of explains, not that I feel compelled to explain myself necessarily, my penchant for palaver; one is comforted knowing where such things originate in one. No? Or why. It isn’t enough to just say that I have a bubbly disposition, for ‘bubbly’ doesn’t begin to convey the enormity of what some would call an affliction. To paraphrase Redd Foxx, such loquacity goes clear to the bone; some go so far as to suggest it borders on the pathological.  Who is this ‘some’ I keep referring to, and how is it they have so much to say on just about every and any topic? ‘Some’ ( cf. ‘others’) is a collective noun designating a small, outspoken group of people who surely must suffer from manic depression themselves—some never shut up!

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A Quotation from Malcolm Lowry’s Under The Volcano

The below is a fiercely bipolar piece of magnificent prose, something that needs to and deserves to live forever online.

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She had reached the limit of the clearing, where the path divided in two.  She hesitated.  Pointing to the left, as it were straight on, another aged arrow on a tree repeated : a la Cascada.  But a similar arrow on another tree pointed away from the stream down a path to her right: a Parian.  She chose the main path, and the jungle returned, its damp earthy leguminous smell rising about her with the night.

The noise of the approaching falls was like the awakening voices of five thousand bobolinks in an Ohio savannah.  Toward it the torrent raced furiously, fed from above, where, down the left bank, transformed abruptly into a great wall of vegetation, water was spouting into the stream through thickets festooned with convolvuli on a higher level than the topmost trees of the jungle.  And it was as though one’s spirit too were being swept on by the swift current with the uprooted trees and smashed bushes in debacle towards that final drop.

She came to the little cantina El Petate.  It stood, at a short distance from the clamourous falls, its lighted windows friendly against the twilight, and was at  present occupied, she saw, by only the barman and two Mexicans, shepherds or quince farmers, deep in conversation, and leaning against the bar.–Their mouths opened and shut soundlessly, their brown hands traced patterns in the air, courteously.

The El Petate, which from where she stood resembled a sort of complicated postage stamp, surcharged on its outside walls with its inevitable advertisements for Moctezuma, Criollo, Cafeaspirina, mentholatum–no se rasque las picaduras de los insectos!–

In the smashing din she waited outside…  Startled, she took a step backwards.  She had stumbled over a wooden structure close to the Petate that seemed to spring at her.  It was a wooden cage, she saw by the light from the windows, in which crouched a large bird.

It was a small eagle she had startled, and which was now shivering in the damp and dark of its prison.  The cage was set between the cantina and a low thick tree, really two trees embracing one another:  an amate and a sabino.  The breeze blew spray in her face.  The falls sounded.  The intertwined roots of the two tree lovers flowed over the ground towards the stream, ecstatically seeking it, though they didn’t really need it; the roots might as well have stayed where they were, for all around them nature was out-doing itself in extravagant fructification.  In the taller trees beyond there was a cracking, a rebellious tearing, and a rattling, as of cordage; boughs like booms swung darkly and stiffly about her, broad leaves unfurled.  There was a sense of black conspiracy, like ships in harbour before a storm, among these trees, suddenly through which, far up in the mountains, lightening flew, and the light in the cantina flickered off, then on again, then off.  No thunder followed.  The storm was a distance away once more.  Yvonne waited in nervous apprehension:  the lights came on.  There the bird was still, a long-winged dark furious shape, a little world of fierce despairs and dreams, and memories of floating high above Popocatepetl, mile on mile, to drop through the wilderness and alight, watching, in the timberline ghosts of ravaged mountain trees.  With hurried quivering hands Yvonne began to unfasten the cage.  The bird fluttered out of it and alighted at her feet, hesitated, took flight to the roof of El Petate, then abruptly flew off through the dusk, not to the nearest tree, as might have been supposed, but up…she was right, it knew it was free…up soaring, with a sudden cleaving of pinions into the deep dark blue pure sky above, in which at that moment appeared one star.  No compunction touched Yvonne.  She felt only an inexplicable secret triumph and relief:  no one would ever know she had done this; and then, stealing over her, the sense of utter heartbreak and loss.

                                                           Malcolm Lowry

                                   Under the Volcano, 1941-1947

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