When we speak of the thing we have to validate the thing. That’s the rule. So instead of just saying ‘the thing’ we have to say ‘the great thing’ or ‘the wonderful thing’ or the ‘fantastic amazing thing’ or something like that. Anything just as long as we are validating it. If you mention the thing in a non-validating way then everyone will attack you; they will sting you to death if they get a chance. Or am I thinking of wasps? Crawling all over you, stinging for all they’re worth, stinging like crazy. All you can see is a yellow and black carpet of frantic wasps, jostling excitedly with each other in their hurry to sting you. To have the very great privilege of stinging you. To have the great honour of stinging you repeatedly until they die from exhaustion. That’s a good enough reason to validate the thing anyway, I would have thought. That’s incentive enough for anyone. Incentization is the name of the game in this world – you can validate any old rubbish if you’re properly incentivised. Isn’t that a fact? A fact like any other – neither good nor bad. Neither tall nor short. Some things are both young and old at the same time, can you believe that? That’s another fact. I’m young, and yet I am already old. I am old, yet I am already young! I’m not sure which way around it is. Maybe it’s both ways at once. Many fine words reverberate within my head. Many fine words resonate in my head but they’re not mine. No indeed they’re not – they’re nothing to do with me at all. I have come here today to tell the world about how good the thing is, how great and wonderful it is. I spend a lot of time going from door to door, talking to people about the thing, and explaining to them how very great it is. ‘Excuse me sir, excuse me madam’, I say. ‘Can I interest you in the thing?’ The thing is always on my mind of course. The thing is always on my mind, the thing is always on my mind. Better to flee than have your liver squeezed out, a wise man once said and no one here amongst us will doubt his words. Better to validate the thing to everyone you meet than get stung to death by a horde of angry hornets. Many fine words are reverberating through my head but many rubbishy old words as well. Horrible old words. There is an awful lot of dross circulating in that head of mine and that is always demoralising. ‘Demoralised by the dross? Buy our product and you’ll never have to put up with that kind of crap again. Alternatively, you can pray to the thing…’ No one took any notice of my ranting of course. We have adapted ourselves to the artificial world and that’s why we are all so happy. Or a bit happy at least. Not too happy, but a bit. Just a kind of lukewarm happy. But also not that happy really. My mind keeps telling me that the thing is great but something else tells me that it isn’t! One particular insight that I have had along the way is that no one really likes being themselves. ‘What’s so great about that insight?’ you may ask. But then again, you may not ask. The popular illusion is that everyone likes being themselves and that they’re all having a great time being themselves, a super-great time, so if you’re not – if you don’t actually like being yourself that much – then you must be some sort of appalling freak. That doesn’t particularly help you to like being yourself of course – that just makes you take against yourself even more. No one likes that, after all. No one likes being the kind of abnormal freak who isn’t having a great time being themselves.