I Think You're Totally Wrong: A Quarrel

By David Shields, Caleb Powell

An impassioned, humorous, probing, fiercely inconclusive, nearly-to-the-death debate approximately existence and art—beers included.

Caleb Powell continually desired to develop into an artist, yet he overcommitted to existence (he’s a stay-at-home dad to 3 younger girls), while his former professor David Shields constantly desired to turn into a man or woman, yet he overcommitted to artwork (he has 5 books popping out within the subsequent 12 months and a half). Shields and Powell spend 4 days jointly at a cabin within the Cascade Mountains, enjoying chess, capturing hoops, climbing to lakes and an deserted mine; they rewatch My Dinner with André and The journey, relax in a scorching bathtub, and speak about every thing they could ponder within the identify of exploring and debating their significant query (life and/or art?): marriage, relatives, activities, intercourse, happiness, medicinal drugs, demise, betrayal—and, after all, writers and writing.

The relationship—the stability of power—between Shields and Powell is in consistent flux, as egos attempt to undermine one another, personalities overlap and cave in. This booklet seeks to deconstruct the Q&A layout, which has roots as deep as Plato and Socrates and as large as Laurel and Hardy, Beckett’s Didi and Gogo, and Car Talk’s Magliozzi brothers. I imagine You’re Totally Wrong additionally seeks to confound, up to attainable, the divisions among “reality” and “fiction,” among “life” and “art.” There aren't any lecturers or scholars the following, no interviewers or interviewees, no masters within the universe—only a chasm of uncertainty, in a discussion that continues to be dazzlingly provocative and wonderful from begin to finish.

James Franco's version of I imagine you are absolutely incorrect into a movie, with Shields and Powell striving mightily to play themselves and Franco in a aiding position, may be published later this yr.

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WAITRESS: Here’s your beer. CALEB: thank you a lot. What was once I announcing? humans at the correct aren’t “evil. ” Rupert Murdoch isn’t “evil. ” Terry’s been handled particularly; her coworkers are handled particularly; they've got strong merits. The tougher you're employed, the extra you receives a commission. NewsCorp supplies greater than they need to in advantages and holidays, and so they famous homosexual unions once they didn’t need to. NewsCorp owns HarperCollins, for crying out loud. Does Barbara Kingsolver have “moral qualms” approximately cashing her HarperCollins royalty payment? Do Matt Groening and The Simpsons posse, men like Harry Shearer, have “moral qualms” that NewsCorp makes them multimillionaires? you need to have relatively cherished your nutrition. DAVID: It’s scrumptious. The nutrition is actually reliable right here. CALEB: It hits the spot. CALEB: Sam Harris, within the ethical panorama, says that psychopaths characterize one percentage of the inhabitants. Martha Stout, within the Sociopath round the corner, says they symbolize 4 percentage of the inhabitants. Someone’s unsuitable. DAVID: I’d vote for 4. CALEB: Take Milgram, upload human historical past and ethical absolutes, and you may make a case that we’re all sociopaths. DAVID: I’m no longer. I realize the truth of alternative humans. CALEB: relies. My aunt Grace, a poet and my mom’s sister, wrote a poem concerning the dying of her cat. And the purpose of her poem used to be that individuals die for all time far and wide, yet she didn’t care. She used to be devastated via the dying of her cat. Grace is a hot, worrying individual. in fact she’s no longer a sociopath, yet— DAVID: I don’t see the way it illustrates your aspect. A sociopath acts on his delinquent sentiments. he's incapable of empathy or regret. Your aunt simply misses her cat. They’re now not remotely an identical factor. CALEB: I’m attempting to get to John Donne: “Any man’s demise diminishes me, simply because i'm focused on mankind. ” Are we decreased? Are we concerned? I’m operating off what you acknowledged approximately Bush. It comes right down to what number issues of separation there are among you and accountability. You inspiration George Bush evil. You roughly accused him of being a sociopath. let alone Rupert Murdoch and Fox information. hence, i may make a a bit exaggerated but believable case that you just see a global divided, part filled with sociopaths accountable for, say, collateral harm in Iraq yet sans regret or empathy or accountability. I’m taking part in devil’s suggest, after all, and utilizing rhetorical— DAVID: Wait, this can be all only a devil’s recommend argument for you? WAITRESS: Apple pie? DAVID: Sounds nice. Do you could have ice cream? WAITRESS: You guess. okay, apple pie it's. CALEB: The “survivor” episode of cut down [Your Enthusiasm]: The rabbi asks Larry, “Hey, an outstanding pal of mine is a survivor. may well I deliver him? ” Larry says yes. Larry’s father’s good friend, Solly, can be a survivor. Solly is 90, has a pitcher eye, “very Jewish. ” Solly exhibits up and says, “Where’s the survivor? ” The rabbi brings out this younger man. Solly is going, “You’re no longer a survivor. ” And the man is going, “I am, too, a survivor. Survivor Australia, ten days with no sneakers, toxic snakes. ” Solly says, “Holocaust, one loaf of bread every week, ten levels less than, Poland.

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