10. The Earth quakes and the heavens rattle;
the beasts of nature flock together and the
nations of men flock apart; volcanoes usher up
heat while elsewhere water becomes ice and
melts; and then on other days it just rains.
11. Indeed do many things come to pass.
      HBT; The Book of Predictions, Chap. 19

    Just prior to the decade of the nineteen-sixties, when Sputnik was alone and new, and about the time that Ken Kesey took his first acid trip as a medical volunteer; before underground newspapers, Viet Nam, and talk of a second American Revolution; in the comparative quiet of the late nineteen-fifties, just before the idea of RENAISSANCE became relevant....

    Two young Californians, known later as Omar Ravenhurst and Malaclypse the Younger, were indulging in their habit of sipping coffee at an allnight bowling alley and generally solving the world's problems. This particular evening the main subject of discussion was discord and they were complaining to each other of the personal confusion they felt in their respective lives. "Solve the problem of discord," said one, "and all other problems will vanish." "Indeed," said the other, "chaos and strife are the roots of all confusion."


    Suddenly the place became devoid of light. Then an utter silence enveloped them, and a great stillness was felt. Then came a blinding flash of intense light, as though their very psyches had gone nova. Then vision returned.

    The two were dazed and neither moved nor spoke for several minutes. They looked around and saw that the bowlers were frozen like statues in a variety of comic positions, and that a bowling ball was steadfastly anchored to the floor only inches from the pins that it had been sent to scatter. The two looked at each other, totally unable to account for the phenomenon. The condition was one of suspension, and one noticed that the clock had stopped.