Posted in Short Stories

Another from Bagombo Snuff Box

Kurt Vonngut’s short story “2BR02B” is the kind of story I think about when I think about Vonnegut.  Because it’s a very short story, I don’t want to give too much away.

My favorite character is a painter of a mural who expresses the thought that the world could use a little more “mess”.  He enjoys looking at his paint stained floor tarp more than he enjoys the clean, bright mural he’s painting on the wall of a hospital.  This makes sense in the frightening context of the world described in this story.  Also, anyone who has ever wondered what the deal is with abstract or modern art may get a little bit of insight from Vonnegut’s painter.

This story comes recommended by two bloggers:

Julio at Daddy’s Timeout and Jay at Bibliophilopolis – check them out!


10 thoughts on “Another from Bagombo Snuff Box

  1. Thanks for the link, Dale!

    Also, I didn’t put that together about the painter on my first read, but I totally agree in retrospect. Nice catch!

    1. I read it very quickly and that was what stood out immediately. It’s going to warrant another reading and more thinking!

      1. Well, it’s a brilliant observation! I got caught up in the surface-level plotline involving the expectant father, so I missed the contrast of the muralist and the strict institutional structure. He worked as a cynical observer for me, but that’s a very illuminating contrast.

      2. Thanks, Julio! I liked the way you tied it to some of the political rhetoric and debate going on recently. Very applicable and thought provoking on that front!

  2. Hi Dale,
    Thanks for linking me too. The premise for 2BR02B is not wholly new, but what was new (to me, anyway) was the emphasis that, for someone to be born, someone must be found to volunteer to die to keep the population constant. The suicide studios reminded me of the movie, Soylent Green, but thei suicide stations were more for those were tired and fed up with the world, I think.

    1. Hi Jay, I liked the pictures you included in your post. I’ve heard of the movie Soylent Green, but I’ve never seen it. I will have to check it out soon! I will probably end up reading the rest of Bagombo at some point. Sign-Talker is great so far!

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