I think pretty much all of us are aliens so what's not to believe in. If you were adopted you were certainly an alien in your family, but what about if you felt you were adopted? It seems then you are probably an alien too. I think we make too much of people from other planets or other galaxies. I take comfort thinking some of them may be walking among us. I feel like they might be the most comfortable people in our culture. They probably have a really good support network, and since only the craziest people in our culture would seriously think for a moment that they (the aliens) might be aliens, they would actually have the experience of total secrecy, total identity, total community. The rest of us, the suffering lot, are alone, alien, and always right on the verge of getting caught for what we really are - other. Alien. I'd like to propose a name for this phenomenon: Ottermen. A new collective term that refers to a culture made up entirely of people feeling alone, the not belonging majority. Amen.

William Wegman




Masthead contributor Eileen Myles is a poet, novelist, public talker and art journalist. 

Contributor photo by Shae Detar