do what thou wilt.
© 1996 Jamie Zawinski <>

One rainy night I was shopping in my favorite comic book shop. It was late, and the store was relatively empty; there were perhaps a dozen people, silently scanning the shelves or flipping pages.

One of the employees, perched behind the front counter, turned on the intercom. ``Attention Comic Relief shoppers,'' he deadpanned, ``For the next five minutes, you are permitted to lose your inhibitions and go wild. Do whatever you like.'' Pause. ``Five minutes only. Thank you.''

I chuckled to myself, and continued browsing.

After a minute or so, the other fellow behind the counter turned to him and pointed out, ``they're not doing anything.''

``Indeed'', the first fellow said, ``perhaps they're afraid.''

Click. ``Four minutes and thirty seconds left,'' he announced. Click.

``On the other hand,'' the second fellow said, ``perhaps they're already doing exactly what they want. Perhaps they don't need our permission to do anything. Perhaps they're all already the masters of their own destinies.''

``Perhaps so,'' contemplated the first fellow. ``What enlightened times these are in which we live.''

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