Scott:  You’re back so soon? What brings you this way?

Zhuangzi:  Ha, ha! “What brings me this way!?” You do, of course. I am entirely at your disposal—I come when you call and say what you want.

Scott:  Eh, you seem to be in a bit of a mood. Did the debate with Mencius and Xunzi not go well?

Zz: It went as expected—and was fun in all its nonsense. But that has nothing to do with my “mood” as you call it. Aren’t I really just telling you like it is? Do you disagree?

Scott:  Well, no. How could I? I’ve just never heard you protest before.

Zz: Protest? Did I protest? Go ahead and make me say whatever you like—it’s all the same to me. Indeed, I quite enjoy it!

Scott:  So . . . I can’t help but ask again (though I know you won’t answer)—Do I get you mostly right?

Zz:  Ha! You just can’t let it go! When you get how it doesn’t matter whether you get me right, you will have gotten me right. But I’ve moved on from all that you want to get right in any case.

Scott:  Wait. Let me get this straight. You no longer believe what you wrote?

Zz: No longer? What makes you think I ever believed it?

Scott:  If you didn’t believe it, why did you write it?

Zz:  I believed it enough to not believe it. But you still seem to believe it. Surely you don’t believe your own drivel. Do, you? Tell me you don’t.

Scott:  I guess I do and I don’t. At least I try not to. Sorta. But look, this is getting complicated—maybe we should have a glass of wine to help ease the way.

Zz: A glass? Such bad-faith! But yes, let’s ease your way. This may be more dis-comforting than complicated.

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