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The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Conspiracy Theorist

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Contemplating the unquestionable.


We walk early, right after breakfast, since it looks like rain again.

"I'm thinking of putting together a list of questions that those masterminds of 9/11 should be able to answer."

"Who are you talking about?" says Vee.

"I'm talking about Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and those other four guys that are going to be tried in Guantanamo."

"What for?"

"Just to make it clear that there are all these questions that they should be able to answer if they really were the ones behind it. They could put all the conspiracy theories to rest."

"And you think they'll get answered."

"No, of course not. They won't even be asked. It's a kangeroo court. They'll be found guilty and executed. No one will be the wiser."

"So what's the point?"

"Just to make it clear that they should be asked."

"What good is that?"

I know I won't do it.

"What good is anything?" I say. Just to have something to say.

"What's that supposed to mean?" Vee says, somewhat exasperated. She is relentlessly rational.

Fortunately the sky remains intact and we can do our usual route without getting drenched, which is more than we expected.


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Born in Washington, D.C., Ph.D. (linguistics) Cornell, B.A. Johns Hopkins (Romance languages), retired after teaching English as a foreign language at a German university for many years, still living in Germany.

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