Over the Dam
Only a few years before she became the toast of the international literary community with her best-selling book The Shipping News, writer E. Annie Proulx was virtually unknown. She did not publish her first book of fiction until she was in her early fifties.
“I certainly dont regret becoming a writer later because I know a lot more about life than I did 20 years ago, ten years ago,” she says. “I think its important to know how the waters gone ever the dam before you start to describe it. It helps to have been over the dam yourself.”
Quoted in Current Biography, Readers Digest, January, 1996, p. 97.
Two pals are sitting in a pub watching the eleven-oclock news. A report comes on about a man threatening to jump from the 20th floor of a downtown building. One friend turns to the other and says, “Ill bet you ten bucks the guy doesnt jump.”
“Its a bet,” agrees his buddy.
A few minutes later, the man on the ledge jumps, so the loser hands his pal a $10 bill. “I cant take your money,” his friend admits. “I saw him jump earlier on the six-oclock news.”
“Me, too,” say the other buddy. “But I didnt think hed do it again!”