“The Papuans”, 1982

 

1. Beware of the Papuans sitting in the trees. They could kill you or your friends; they could skin you alive and stretch your hide onto a drum. By the way, they won’t kill out of malice; it’s only because they’re stupid, mostly. Papuans tend to make mistakes.

 

2. Papuans feel sad all the time. Sadness comes to them unexpectedly like a gust of wind, which is when they start to fuss and fret. Even if they fuss and fret in different ways, they usually wind up hanging head down from some branch, pondering something quietly.

 

3. As soon as a good-looking girl comes up to a Papuan, he’ll immediately squat down, and squat and squat until the girl goes away or knocks him on the back of his head so he stops acting out. But the Papuan isn’t acting out: this is how he makes love. He makes love faithfully, gently, childlike and naive, without being vulgar in the least.

 

4. Papuans are constantly hounded by fear. Fear makes them die. Papuans die in a very simple way: they simply lie down on the ground and close their eyes.