Henry's universe was modeled on the highball. It was a mixture in which half a pint of the fizziest philosophical and scientific ideas all but drowned a small jigger of immediate experience, most of it strictly sexual. Broken reeds are seldom good mixers. They're far too busy with their ideas, their sensuality and their psychosomatic complaints to be able to take an interest in other people - even their own wives and children. They live in a state of the most profound voluntary ignorance, not knowing anything about anybody, but abounding in preconceived opinions about everything.