” …. no one really doubted that it was the extravagance and proliferation of language that had caused the temperature of the earth’s crust to rise and, in places – California, Japan, London – to crack open and form long ragged lakes of fire. The evidence was everywhere and it was incontrovertible; thermal maps and measurements, sonar readings, caloric separations, a network of subterranean monitoring systems – all these had reinforced the integrity of the original Scottish theories. But the delegates, sitting in the plenary session of the second International Conference, were still reluctant to take regulatory action …. It was as though the human race, by refusing to make linguistic sacrifices, had willed its own destruction.”
Carol Shields, Collected Stories (2004) Copyright The Carol Shields Literary Trust.