Steve Braunias: Ancient man discovers the wheel

I viewed the high, dark ranges with wild surmise, and wondered what was on the other side. I knew it was the world. The problem was how to get there. It felt impassable. I was in crisis talks with myself. I thought: I give up.

This is how character is formed, or deformed. We hold on to such moments. They assume the power of a spell, and we go along with it all our lives. I gave up: I became one of life's passengers, mere cargo. People have often asked, "Why don't you drive?" I've sometimes replied, loftily, "I prefer not to." But really I was just afraid.