Barry Duncan: Master palindromist
This is a pretty fascinating piece about a guy who thinks palindromically.
“People who write palindromes are not the kind of people who are going to call attention to themselves. I think they’re very much people who are comfortable being behind the scenes, practicing the invisible craft.”
Turns out that palindrome writing is a relationship killer…
“In order to share some of his writing, he produced a small collection, which he titled Assorted Palindromes and One Song. It wasn’t long before a close friend dubbed it “The Relationship Killer.”
Duncan would send the collection to people he knew and simply never hear from them again. So he began warning people. “I tell people before I give it to them, ‘I give this to people, I never hear from them again.’ And they say, ‘Ha ha ha, that won’t happen.’ And it happens. People think it’s freakish, and don’t even know what to say about it.” And the thing is, he wasn’t looking for affirmation. “I didn’t expect people to say, ‘Oh, I was dazzled!’ All I wanted them to say was ‘I got it in the mail.’They can’t even write and say, ‘Oh, thanks for the thing you sent me.’ I mean, just… nothing. And I think a normal person would’ve thought, you know, this palindrome-writing is not the way to win friends and influence people.”