“You know, manacles and chains have functions in modern life which their fevered inventors must never have considered in an earlier and simpler age. If I were a suburban developer, I would attach at least one set to the walls of every new yellow brick ranch-style and Cape Cod split level. When the suburbanites grow tired of television and Ping Pong or whatever they do in their little homes, they could chain one another up for a while. Everyone would love it. Wives would say, ‘My husband put me in chains last night. It was wonderful. Has your husband done that to you lately?’ And children would hurry eagerly home from school to their mother who would be waiting to chain them. It would help the children to cultivate the imagination denied them by television and would appreciably cut down on the incidence of juvenile delinquency. When Father came in from work, the whole family could grab him and chain him for being stupid enough to be working all day long to support them. Troublesome old relatives would be chained in the carport. Their hands would be released only once a month so they could sign over their Social Security checks. Manacles and chains could build a better life for all. I must give this some space in my notes and jottings.”
– Ignatius Reilly in A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
Ignatius is one of the few literary characters who I have felt so close to, empathized with so much, and grown to love.