Not too many moths ago a very dear friend of mine let me know that my favorite author, Tom Robbins, published another book. You see, I have read every one of his novels, shortly after they were published, and patiently waited for the next one to come out. A few years ago Mr. Robbins stopped writing, or at least I thought he had. Connie let me know that he had published his auto-biography.
I’m a happy man right now. The other day I began reading Tibetan Peach Pie: A True Account of an Imaginative Life. The writing in this book follows along the lines of his previous novels, of which a couple I would put up there in the top two or three of my most favorite.
I was going to show off my fancy new learned skill by posting the link to the preview of this book, but I decided not to. I want to share with you my own preview of what I think is a great piece of work (but, you can access the preview with just a couple of clicks through this link). Tom Robbins does a very good job of telling the story of his life while engaging thought processes not his own—well, maybe he began with his own, but he wound up doing a helluva job on mine.
So, without further adieu I bring you a lovely little excerpt from Tibetan Peach Pie.
“In all the years that have slid into the history pit since 1940 Blowing Rock carnival, I’ve never won another raffle. Why? Did I use up a lifetime’s allotment of lottery luck on that one classic occasion? Or is it that I’ve never again entered a contest or game of any kind with that level of belief? Was it testimony, on a peewee scale, to the power of faith? And did I lose my faith in raffles about the same time and for approximately the same reasons that I quit believing that virgins can have babies; or that if I slay only those people the government encourages me to slay, I’ll be allowed to spend all of eternity in some vaguely located pufflyand sipping milk and honey with a huzzahing throng of cheery non thinkers? (As the painter Ad Reinhardt said when asked if he was an Abstract Expressionist, ‘To Heaven — but not with them guys!’)
“Saint Paul defined faith as ‘a belief in things unseen.’ Well, I believe in unseen things. Don’t you? Love. Electricity, Flatulence. Moreover, a great many of us seem to experience an innate longing to interface somehow with powers and forces we sense but can never fully identify or comprehend: such yearnings is the impetus for all spirituality (as opposed to organized religion), and can be intensified and even temporarily actualized under the influence of deep meditation or LSD. If that’s faith, Paulie, we’ll take a half pound on spec and get back to you Monday. But I digress.
Maybe, on the other hand, I never won another prize because I sold the damn radio ten days later.”