- 6 -
The consulate flags hung limp in the rain, as if shamed by the moral
force of their frail protest. You were given a placard to carry, reading
Make Babies Not Freakshows, and you felt foolish. As though you had any
acquaintance with babies, as though a sodden handful of students outside
the U.S. consulate-general, in a dwarfish and absurd province, was likely to
fend off nuclear armageddon, was not in itself a sad little freakshow,
Falshaw, student journalist, fat and pustular, confronts you with his round
red comedian face, on the picket line.
-How’s the daemon lover, then?
-Depends. Is it some daemon who loves me, or me who’s supposed to
love some daemon?
-Both in your case, I'd say.
-How about the revolution?
-Delayed for the time being, on account of industrial action, listen,
you haven’t joined the Labour Club yet, people are beginning to talk.
-I prefer writing to joining.
-What you are, Toshy, is what I call a gut socialist. You feel it deep
down but you don't think it through, that's okay, we need your type in the
-I may have a couple of instincts that I'm prepared to credit. I'm not
prepared to institutionalise them, though, not quite yet.
-Bourgeois individualism very big danger, artistic types much prone to
A gnarled and greasy man, his eyes balefully magnified by slablike
glasses, passed by on a circuit of his own, counterclockwise to theirs, clad
in a sandwich-board proclaiming Christ Said, Ye Must Be Born Again.
-Christ was the first socialist, you know, Falshaw told the man as he