Suspension of Disbelief

October 6, 2011

Rita Lee came back with a frozen Milky Way and some confession magazines and comic books.  She read about a miser duck called Uncle Scrooge, and his young duck nephews, whose adventures took place in a city where all the bystanders, the figures on the street, were anthropoid dogs walking erect.  Norwood read about Superman and the double-breasted-suited Metropolis underworld.  It was a kryptonite story and not a bad one.  He went through the book in no time at all and rolled it up and stuck it in his pocket.  “Did you ever see that dude on television?” he said.

Rita Lee looked up with annoyance from her duck book.  “Who?”


“Yeah, and I know what you’re going to say, he killed himself, the one who played Superman.”

“It looks all right when you’re reading it.  I didn’t believe none of it on television.”

“You’re not supposed to really believe it.”

“You’re supposed to believe it a little bit.  I didn’t believe none of it.”

– Charles Portis, Norwood (1966)