Stoned Man Taken to Mental Hospital for Failing Metaphor Test


An anti-war demonstrator got stoned on horse tranquilizer and walked over to the White House to wish President Nixon a happy birthday and to warn him, citing Herman Melville’s Manichean Moby Dick, that the world was literally engaged in a war between Good and Evil. Wherefore the man was asked what it means when someone says that a man who lives in a glass house should not throw stones. When he gave the concrete reason, that the glass would break, it was determined that he was incapable of abstract thinking and must therefore be demented; he was taken into custody and whisked off to St. Elizabeth’s hospital for examination. But he escaped, and threw his identification into the Potomac because he had found out who he really was when a patient at the hospital referred to him as the son of god. He was arrested in Maryland for nonpayment of a bill for breakfast after taking a sign in a motel dining room (‘Please Help Yourself to the Food’) literally, having no money on him at all. His father paid the fine and sent him funds to venture to Manhattan, where he rented a room in a Masonic lodge converted to a hotel. He took the mirror off the wall, put a chair on it and sat on the chair because the sheriff in the Maryland jail had told him he had better reflect on what he was doing. When the Secret Service called on his family in the Midwest to inquire into his conduct, the agents discovered that he was writing a children’s book about whales.


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