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Extra info for Condé Nast Traveller [UK] (October 2015)
What the brats in life fail to grasp is that the trails of history are blazed not by those who cling to what is, but by those who dare to seek out what might be. We could o er examples of such folks, the ones who proclaimed their righteousness most belligerently, but history’s ultimate judgment can be found in the fact that their names have largely been forgotten—whereas the names of Copernicus, Galileo, and other such curious truth seekers will be enshrined for eternity. As Veruca Salt is hoisted by her self-possessed petard, she reminds us of the simple lesson that believing your own press is dangerous.
But you don’t have to be Isaac Asimov to understand his broader point. From the moment we’re born, the clock begins to tick, daring us to accomplish all that we need to before that last grain of sand drops through the hourglass. Whether, per Asimov’s hypothetical, we know how much time we have left, the knowledge that we’re engaged in a race we’ve been engineered to lose can become reason for despair or a clarion call to action. For anyone who’s ever been driven by the creative impulse—by the all-encompassing need to take what’s inside and put it out there— Asimov’s words don’t merely ring true; they carry the weight of gospel.
But if you’re just bored? If you just don’t feel like doing your chores? Quit your yapping. Unlike lots of 1980s epic fantasy that ripped o Tolkien, Eddings’s Belgariad read more like a fuller, richer Star Wars saga dressed up in Arthurian drag. “YOU KEEP USING THAT WORD. ” —INIGO MONTOYA, THE PRINCESS BRIDE HERE’S WHY WE LOVE INIGO MONTOYA: there is not a cynical bone in his body. ” his schemes could be defeated, the little loudmouth knew precisely what the word meant—he was simply such an irrepressibly arrogant ass that he was determined to insist the word was warranted when it really, really wasn’t.