“My God,” she said, “are you a Hoosier?”
I admitted I was.
“I’m a Hoosier, too,” she crowed. “Nobody has to be ashamed of being a Hoosier.”
“I’m not,” I said. “I never knew anybody who was.”
“Hoosiers do all right. Lowe and I’ve been around the world twice, and everywhere we went we found Hoosiers in charge of everything.”
“You know the manager of that new hotel in Istanbul?”
“He’s a Hoosier. And the military-whatever-he-is in Tokyo …”
“Attaché,” said her husband.
“He’s a Hoosier,” said Hazel. “And the new Ambassador to Yugoslavia …”
“A Hoosier?” I asked.
“Not only him, but the Hollywood Editor of Life magazine, too. And that man in Chile …”
“A Hoosier, too?”
“You can’t go anywhere a Hoosier hasn’t made his mark,” she said.
“The man who wrote Ben Hur was a Hoosier.”
“And James Whitcomb Riley.”
Hazel’s obsession with Hoosiers around the world was a textbook example of a false karass, of a seeming team that was meaningless in terms of the ways God gets things done, a textbook example of what Bokonon calls a granfalloon. Other examples of granfalloons are the Communist party, the Daughters of the American Revolution, the General Electric Company, the International Order of Odd Fellows—and any nation, anytime, anywhere.
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Cat's Cradle