Chinua Achebe calls the Literary Fiction Crisis Line


Happy birthday to Chinua Achebe, who would have been 90 years old today.

COUNSELOR: Literary Fiction Crisis Line, what is your emergency?
CHINUA ACHEBE (caller): An Umiofa man does not refuse a call.
COUNSELOR: Neither do I.
ACHEBE: He may refuse to do what is asked
COUNSELOR: Why? What are you going to ask me?
ACHEBE: But he does not refuse to be asked.
COUNSELOR: If it’s bad, you may not get to ask me twice.
ACHEBE: But the times have changed, and we must be fully prepared.
COUNSELOR: Wait–you think that’s why the polls were off? People refusing to be asked?