Lessons in Humility

Saturday, 10 December 2022

Up at as near to dawn as I could manage, out into the coldest I’d yet experienced. According to the weather app it was zero degrees but felt like minus five. It felt like zero to me. The temperatures don’t have the bite the raw numbers suggest, perhaps because of the lack of wind in what is, after all, among the most built up areas on the planet. New Yorkers plod around dressed as if for a Siberian winter in temperatures that would make most most English people reach, reluctantly, for a jumper and to which most Tasmanians would react by taking one off, assuming they owned such a thing in the first place and could remember how it worked.

My destination was Central Park and the Metropolitan Museum of Art therein contained. My chief tactical error was not to stick to Lexington Avenue and thus avail myself of the same café as yesterday. Instead it was northwards on Fifth, the road not previously taken. Closed luxury retailers holding no interest, there was nothing to catch my attention until I found myself at Trump Tower, and hastily crossed the road. Doing so put me squarely on collision course with the first panhandler of the day, a gentleman of about my own age, and I use the term deliberately as in exchange for $10, he courteously responded to my request for advice.

I am slow in the mornings before caffeine, I know, and can add jetlag to my plea in mitigation, but the grotesqueness of asking for coffee recommendations from a man who keeps body and mind functioning by asking strangers for handouts on the freezing streets did not occur to me until much, much too late. In any event, my courteous companion tried to assist, pointing out a food stand across the road but advising that if I wanted a good coffee, I should return to, and enter, Trump Tower. My dismay will have been obvious and I suspect it was noted without censure, but I am as yet inexpert at reading the non-verbal communications of New Yorkers, especially those with such dramatically different life experiences to my own. The fraction of destitute Black citizens who count themselves among the former Grifter-in-Chief’s supporters is surely small, but even a one in a hundred chance comes up every hundred or so chances.

Whatever his politics, he remained as polite and solicitous of my wellbeing – mine! – as I have come to expect in my 48 hours or so here. In that time, the only discourtesies I have witnessed have been, on each occasion, the act of an obvious visitor to these shores – obvious by virtue of language. In today’s example that language was French, since you ask, but we’ll get to that. It turned out to be a day for being annoyed by French speakers. Americans, in my experience so far, whether native English or Spanish speakers, have mostly been taught their manners by parents who made them stick.

It being obvious by now that I was not going to take either coffee suggestion, a woman passing by informed me that there was a Starbucks around the corner. I tried to conceal the fact that the information was about as useful to me, and as welcome, as news that I might obtain a walk in vasectomy on the next block.

Still, caffeine is but a drug, and I refuse to be a slave to an addiction, knowing too well the feel of that lash. A walk in the park on a crisp winter’s morning would provide me with nourishing sustenance, fresh air, youthful vigour, a glow to my cheeks, etc, etc. And it did, temporarily.

Central Park was green, pretty and only lightly populated by people, all of whom gave precisely no fucks about the requirement to leash their dogs after 9am. It undulates. The trees were green despite the season and the raw rocks broke the soil in attractive masses. I got asked for directions again.

“An Athenian, a Spartan and a Theban walk into a taverna…”

The park also contained a coffee shop, regrettably another chain, in which I placed an order. They need a better system. I watched one Quebecker (best guess) pinch someone else’s brew, tell off another tourist (Chinese by grandparentage, certainly, but whether mainland or diaspora I couldn’t say) for accidentally claiming the wrong cup, get confused and then bugger off leaving chaos in his wake. What I think happened next is that I ceded my coffee to the woman whose order had been nicked and ended up with the café au lait ordered by Monsieur Dickhead. It was horrible, but I’ve no reason to assume that the latte I’d ordered would have been any better. It had, at least, the virtue of warmth.

But now, the Met. It’s a striking building with an impressive collection, of course. First to the antiquities, the development of sculptural style over the thousand years from the earliest Greeks to the late Romans clearly explained and easy to see. The Egyptians as fascinating as ever. To meet a man, no king but a civil servant, of the middle third millennium! Nobody, we may safely say, will know my name 4,500 years hence. The only disappointment was the lack (at least on my circuit) of anything of comparable antiquity from Mesopotamia. But then, I have the British Museum still to come. My greatest delights came from the smallest pieces. One little fellow, no bigger than my thumb, grinned cheekily at me from the Attica of 500 years before Christ. A ring seal, only millimetres across, exquisitely captured the figure of a woman, the fidelity and skill in the carving astonishing to behold. My first Benin bronzes, full of life and humour, at least to these alien eyes.

The European collection is grand – more Monets, Cezannes and Gaugins than I’ve ever seen in one place. Rousseau’s Forest in Winter at Sunset heavy with hinted at horrors. Kuindzhi’s Red Sunset on the Dnieper a wash of blood granted new poignancy by this year’s events, hard not to a see a hint of mushroom in that menacing cloud. Only one Turner, one of the Venice cityscapes. The American works equally impressive. Washington Crossing the Delaware would dominate any room, the general looking there and elsewhere like a middle-aged bank manager called temporarily to other duties, and irritated at the distraction. And finally, my first ever Sargents in the flesh, and what flesh, every bit as characterful and photographic as I expected.

No chance to see all I wanted to, of course, and foolish to try, especially when there was a World Cup quarter final to watch. But where to do so? The first couple of bars I peered into were too crowded and so I kept plodding towards the one I’d found last night (the Triple Crown, for the record, on Seventh Avenue) but about two blocks short I found a pizza place with multiple screens, bought a couple of slices and made them last ninety minutes. I joined a small but growing, and increasingly noisy, bunch as we watched twelve Frenchmen, one carrying a whistle, just edge out eleven English lads of undoubted nobility and equally undoubted lack of composure from the penalty spot, Seb and I chatting via text from half a world apart. I left, too quickly, in disgust at the close of play.

On the videophone to Anna as I made my way to the design store attached to the Museum of Modern Art (the museum itself not yet visited) and then, tired of battling the crowds, back to the hotel to pen these lines in the hotel cocktail bar, rolling the dice on what I’m drinking. A Clover Club, it turns out, is gin, raspberry and egg whites and captures, very strangely, some of the taste of the city air. A White Cosmopolitan contains Cointreau, vodka, lime and white cranberry juice plus some whole cranberries, making it by some distance the most healthy and vitamin filled thing I’ve consumed since I arrived. Too sweet, but then what isn’t, here?

Manhattan on Foot

Friday, 9 December 2022
Emissions elevation

Up and out of bed as early as I can manage, trying to force my body into a new time zone. On the street at roughly 9am and start walking, first up Lexington Avenue to a café that the internet told me is a slice of Melbourne transplanted to NYC. My sister, better travelled, has told me that New York’s many marvellous qualities do not include widely available decent coffee, so I am prepared to do some research on that, before risking my entire day. The café so lauded by the web is no more, perhaps predictably, but its in situ replacement sells me a flat white, under that name, which is perfectly acceptable. Either there’s something in the groundwater at 667 Lexington, or New Yorkers have got better at making coffee since Kate was last here. Or the barista stayed when the owners changed.

From there, west to Fifth Avenue and south, south and more south, switching to Broadway where it intersects. My target: the Battery and a sight of Lady Liberty.

Which I managed, with very few stops, Saks the only store I spent any time in, making my way up to menswear, trying to decide whether 40% off a pair of very nice $5,000 trousers made them merely ludicrously overpriced or still an affront to human dignity. Undecided, but still determined to escape before my nose started bleeding, I made my way quickly to the lower lobby, where the jewelry that Anna wants is kept. Nothing had a price tag and I would have been too embarrassed to ask even had I seen anything I liked, so it was back outside and southwards, ho.

Probably the most obviously unique aspect of New York City so far is the tendency of the ground, already remarked upon in yesterday’s post, to emit smokes and vapours, as though the city were built upon a pit of nineteenth century industry, in which gangs of labourers toil in subterranean manufactories, enormous brass wheels turning while coal is shoveled into furnaces as fast as the bare-chested, grime-sweated men can make it so. It wisps from manhole covers, billows from grilled vents and gushes from plastic chimneys installed to raise the emission point a metre above the respiratory intakes of pedestrians and thus, presumably, wholly out of mind. I paused, in my progress down retail luxury’s most celebrated boulevard, to snap a photograph of such a chimney against a suitable backdrop, and only noticed when I came to review the photographs at the end of the day that I had perfectly centred the Empire State Building. Until that moment, I would have sworn that I had not yet seen that landmark.

Broadway got me to Union Square, where a small farmers’ market was in progress, which I quickly filmed with the aim of demonstrating to Anna that life in the centre of a densely populated megalopolis would be, if only she’d see it, just like living in Willunga (population: not sure, but next time they’re round for a barbie I’ll do a head count). From there to Wall Street, where I wandered in circles for a bit, found my way back to Broadway about thirty metres south of the charging bull statue, the arse of which was surrounded by visitors taking pictures of each other and, I imagine, the other end was too. But now my target was, if not in sight, then within a respectable golf shot, so on I pressed.

And made it, first past the National Museum of the American Indian, which occupies a prominent spot, albeit not as prominent as the one on the $20 note where Andrew Jackson’s vinegared visage still sits. Finally, past the queues of people with the time and the money to take the ferry to Liberty and Ellis Islands (“airport-style security ahead”, warned the placard, despite the low success rate of attempts so far to bring down a major city office tower by crashing a boat into it) to where I could see the famous symbol of the promise, fractured if never entirely smashed, of refuge and new possibilities. You’ll have to zoom in. Truly, she was more impressive in real life, but clearly I’d need to take the ferry to get a better look.

The imprisoned lightning

The small park at the Battery included, weirdly, not one but two erhu players, one banging out Christmas tunes while the other, at least as I walked past, playing Happy Birthday, fairly badly. Also, the rather overwrought statue celebrating immigrants to the US, which made me think of what Rodin might have produced if he told his models to ham it up, big time. From there, my first experience of the New York subway, which was fast, efficient, no filthier than London’s Underground and, despite what American late night television hosts had led me to believe, contained nobody publicly masturbating or obviously mentally ill, your correspondent perhaps excepted.

St Bart’s by night

A brief stop back at the hotel to lose a couple of layers of clothing, the day having warmed up, but shortly after setting out again I realised that I needed to negotiate with my circadian rhythm, so by 3.00pm I was back for a nap. My short walk contained only two points of note: my first indication that NYC has noticed that the World Cup is on, via the screen in the lunch bar I stopped at showing the Argentina v Netherlands game (commentary in Spanish) and, check your bingo cards, my first experience since arriving of being asked for directions, incredibly by a native Brooklyner, a softly spoken young African American lad just back from some time at a school upstate who was as confused as me about precisely where the platform for the number 7 train was to be found in the warren that lies under the Port Authority Bus Station. Yes, we were looking for a train under a bus station run by the people responsible for the boats and that’s just how we roll, here in the big city. Keep up, bumpkins.

After my nap, out again for a traipse, no goal but experience and no guide but my nose. Fifth Avenue southwards again, mostly, but this time not seduced by that temptress Broadway, then down 34th Street until I hit Macy’s. Which means, incidentally, that I must have walked absolutely slap bang right past the Empire State Building without noticing that it was there at any time. Where that building is concerned, I am clearly in danger of emulating Obelix in Switzerland, sleeping through the entire visit and reporting that the country is flat. At Macy’s, a videolink with home was established, and I was able to show Anna the interior of a department store, in case she had forgotten what one looks like, and also a bit of 34th Street, which was a bit busy and clearly looked sufficiently big cityish that some part of the excitement was conveyed.

From there, a longish walk to Greenwich Village, which reminded me of some bits of Melbourne, and a longish walk back again, via Times Square, towards my hotel. One pint of Guinness in a bar advertising World Cup matches, research for a place to watch tomorrow’s England game only, you understand.

QNYE1: almost constant sidewalk importuning, from the expected destitute wanting $5 to the woman wanting to talk about breast cancer. I didn’t tell her that I’d already given one mother. The only one I have any curiosity about was the young, wispily bearded man who left his more or less identically presented companion to step into my path in Wall Street to ask if I had a moment and was I, perhaps, Jewish? Ah, no, I regretted, at which his face closed like a slammed door and he turned away. To what deep mystery, I cannot help but wonder, might I have been introduced, had I been of the elect?

QNYE2: Pizza, bought by the slice. Times two, from two different places, one in Greenwich Village and one on Third Avenue, not far from my hotel. Pepperoni both times, and I now understand and agree that a broad slice of pizza is properly held by the rim, folded over to maintain structural integrity while you walk. Also, the Third Avenue place made way better pizza, and I’ve no idea whether that’s because it was beef pepperoni, certified halal, or they just know what they’re doing here in Midtown East.

The Longest Thursday in the World

Travel across this many time zones is almost everything, if not all at once, at least within the one package. Numbing and thrilling, it consumes your attention while being profoundly boring. The hours are interminable, while the individual moments are absurd and absorbing. The hours I will elide – they bored me at the time, they would bore me when I read this back years hence. The moments came thin and slow, but there is time enough, in such a day, for many of them, even so. From lifting off in Adelaide at 1.40pm to getting to my hotel in New York after 10.30pm on what, the calendar insists, was the same day, almost exactly 24 hours had elapsed, making my Thursday nearly forty hours long. Arthur Dent would have had a nightmare.

Still, moments. On the bus between the domestic and the international terminals at Sydney airport a woman behind me spoke French and I was delighted to be able to understand most of it, even after I realised that she was speaking for the benefit of her three year old daughter, clearly in the hope that the little girl would absorb some of her mother’s native tongue in an otherwise Anglophone family. Lots of pointing and basic nouns. Just my speed.

At Sydney airport a young man scrutinised me carefully as he asked me if I had packed my bag myself and had it with me at all times. As always under official scrutiny I was slightly nervous, despite blameless living. Having received the required assurance he put a little sticker in my passport, and advised me that I could change my shirt in the men’s toilet. “Why,” I asked, “have I sweated through it?” No, he indicated, it just advertised my enthusiasm for a Premier League team for which he harboured no fondness. Score one for fans of Sadistic Pricks United.

On the plane, the menu of movie options included, under “Classics”, both Call Me By Your Name (2017) and The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972). Older than both, I felt older still, and watched instead The Electrical Life of Louis Wain (2021 and filed under a different category). I managed some sleep and my back hurt.

Annabelle had wondered whether I might, on arrival in Dallas, record a conversation with a local so that she could be convinced that they really do talk like that, not just in the movies. I had explained that I wasn’t going to do that, either secretly or openly, with people all of whom were presumably armed and not famous the world round for their sense of humour. It didn’t matter, as I had no time. Rushed from one terminal to another, I spoke to only three human beings. A man on the train between buildings saw me taking a photo of the rainy window (It rains! In Texas!) and asked whether I wouldn’t rather keep the memory than a photo. I explained that it was my first time in the US and I planned to photograph everything, stopping myself before adding that it was, I believed, a free goddamn country. His accent, as far as I could tell, was Midwestern.

The Chrysler Building, appropriately wreathed in exhaust fumes

I may have been slightly spooked by the fact that nearly my first task in the land of the free, about half an hour earlier, had been to walk through an area patrolled by sniffer dogs. Arriving at that point in the queue, supplicants for the privilege of entering the United States were made to walk, two by two, through a ten metre area in which two men held on leads two dogs not much smaller than they were, which roamed and, as you might guess, sniffed at me and my companion of the moment, our luggage and ankles. The exigencies of odd and even numbers meant that I got paired with a woman whose male travelling companion had just completed the ordeal. I spent the time, when not hoping that I hadn’t accidentally pocketed a rasher of bacon from my airline breakfast, wondering what the etiquette was if one of the beasts went for her throat. Was I expected, as her pair, to try to fight the thing off with my bare hands or did that honour fall to her boyfriend who had already been deemed acceptably unodorous? I was so absorbed that I lagged noticeably behind my companion, who was off, away, our lives never to intersect again, she never to know how close she came to being mauled to death while I stood by, paralysed by questions of decorum.

La Guardia felt new, apparently recently refurbished. Our luggage came out on the wrong carousel. But it came, and then to a taxi, where in the queue a man asked where where I got my luggage. New York City yellow cabs are not like in the movies, at least the ones from the 1970s. All new, sort of mini SUVs with hybrid motors, they would be perfect if the screens carrying incessant advertising of the early morning TV variety would just shut up.

A late night arrival but that’s early by my body clock, so I went for a walk. A couple of degrees above freezing. Every city has a smell. New York’s is like clove cigarettes, if they replaced the cloves with tyres. So fond of it are they, that they pipe it up from some Morlockian underworld through elongated witches’ hats to ensure that we surface dwellers don’t miss any nuance. Just a few blocks, enough to get my bearings and see the skaters at Bryant Park get kicked off the ice at midnight. Then for my first Quintessential New York Experience (hereinafter QNYE), a chilli dog in Times Square. It was, remarkably, exactly what I expected: a plastic sausage in a bun made of air topped with a bean stew containing zero chilli and three, count ’em, sauces on top. Apart from American Mustard (TM), I have no idea what the others were.

And so to bed.

Got my back up

The site crashed most effectively in early 2019, and it took me nearly a year to try to fix it, time and apathy being what they are. I finally did it, though, and here it is. My efficiency at backing up also being what it is, I’ve lost all of 2018, but I don’t think that’s much. The stuff I was really scared I’d lost – the travel diaries – are all still here. The rest is audio stuff I will have somewhere.

Fragment – Farmers’ Market Diary

A snippet I found lurking on Google Drive, part of a project that (like so many) apparently started with a certain sparkle but failed to live long enough to have a part 2. It’s maybe three years old. Liz is in Dublin now, and I haven’t seen much of Heidi since, but here it is.

Saturday was the Farmers’ Market, of course, which meant coffee with Liz.  Liz is the closest friend I’ve made since moving to Willunga.  She’s a midwife, an academic, and a witch and occasionally, I suspect, more of each of those things at the same time than she can easily integrate.  I am sure that she wouldn’t baulk at a little sympathetic magic over the neonates, and I have a feeling that faculty meetings could be quite interesting, too.

It was a sunny morning, the day was full of promise, and we were at the market early enough to watch it come to life around us, so we quite naturally fell to talking of all the ways we were fucked up by our parents, and all the more significant ways we are fucking up our own children.  From there we fell, by turns, into a wide ranging exploration of psycho-sexual development and the differences between men and women.  I spoke, quite poetically I thought, about the seeming self-containment of women, and of the very different male experience, at least as observed from the inside.  I tried to convey the deep, driving urgency of the male sexual need – its power, its everpresence, the hunger, the frustration. Liz bought me a cup of coffee.

We chatted briefly with a new acquaintance, Heidi.  Heidi is an artist, medium paint and pencil, who lives in the Arts Eco Village, a nearby demicommune whose chief claims to ecological sensitivity are communal recycling bins and roads made deliberately narrow and windy, so that one doesn’t see the skateboarding child until it is too late.  Before you have time to react he has done a handstand on your bonnet, tagged your rear bumper with indecipherable hieroglyphics and released a hip hop album.

Heidi is working on a new project intended to explore and celebrate the mature male form.  Seeking to break out from the usual study of male life models, who are all apparently about 20 years old and come to the studio straight from the weights room at the gym, Heidi is looking for men of a more generous figure who are willing to be drawn and painted in the outfit they were born in.  She tells me that the car bonnet she is planning to use is not usually too hot first thing in the morning, and the subject’s modesty will be preserved by the tasteful placement of a range of light weaponry.  Any volunteers can contact me via the website.

The Kierkegaard Spandrel

I have, for some time, been taken by the fact that when I photograph my children, they frequently manage to look contemplative, and troubled, and tousled, and very, very cool. This might have nothing to do with the fact that they are the children of two of the coolest people on the planet, and are largely dressed by one of those very cool people, and have had the opportunity to model themselves on those very cool people. And then again.

In fact, over the years I have thought, on seeing a number of photos of my children, “Ah, there is the cover of his (or their) debut album of shoegazer pop (or underground techno, or alt-folk, or whatever). Come to think of it, I reckon I bought an album like that from Big Star in about 1994. Hermione put me on to it, or Richard, can’t remember. Wasn’t one of the band involved in some sort of bizarre egg-coddling accident?”

That sort of idea can burble along in the background for years, until you have a spare hour or two and a basic image editing program and no pressing need to be doing anything else. Which happened to me recently, and lo, The Kierkegaard Spandrel was born. I’m still not sure if they’re a shoegazer pop group or an underground techno collective or avant-punk outfit. Probably not an alt-folk duo, on second thoughts. But I do know that they will always be very, very cool.


Spring is springing, and with it the quotidian miracle of new life on many fronts, not least in the fifteen centimetres of unpromising dirt that hems one side of our house block. Hard by the corrugated iron fence that daily prevents violence by separating me from my neighbours has sproinged into existence a minor forest of tiny nectarine trees. Once you know what they are, they are as winningly adorable as any vulnerable young creature. A delightful sight – and also the first evidence that these tired eyes have ever seen that the stone in stone fruit has any purpose other than to break mammalian teeth or, if well aimed, the equanimity and goodwill of other children.

The companion of my joys and sorrows will not, I trust, mind overmuch me saying that she is not customarily given to whimsy. Perhaps it is yet another magical effect of spring, then, that caused the thought to enter into her head of attempting to sell some of the seedlings to passers-by. We have a house well situated for such an enterprise, occupying the closest block to the local school, past whose portal hundreds of parents must drag their offspring ten times a week. It is partly for that reason that, in honour of Lyle Shelton, a large rainbow flag has, for the last few weeks, fluttered, if periodically a bit soggily, out front. In keeping with the developing theme, therefore, my occasionally better half hit upon an advertising strategy that consisted of a small, A-frame blackboard promising to enrich the life of Willunga’s more progressive gardeners by supplying them with “gender-neutral nectarine trees”.

The ensuing conversation recalled to my mind an essay I wrote in second-year biochemistry, in which I discussed the sometimes intricate mechanisms employed by plants to avoid the catastrophe of self-fertilisation. The human taboo on incestuous couplings has, it is said, its deep rationale in avoiding the reinforcement of dangerous recessive genes in the offspring of close relatives. How much more pressing a need, therefore, must be felt by plants which, frequently bearing both male and female sex organs, must worry not just about outrunning their brothers but also getting knocked up by themselves, conceivably without even noticing, I assure you, officer.

I could recall, from those balmy, cannabis-saturated days of my undergraduacy, that not all plants face this difficulty, as some are true sexual heteromorphs. Whether that is the case for stone fruit I was eager to learn, and I hied me accordingly to the nearest available internet. What I learned was that one should never, under any circumstances, google “tree sex”, if one hopes to retain a sunny disposition and a freedom from uncontrollable Parkinsonesque twitching.

I am old enough to remember a world when the internet was new and, ipso facto, also a time when it was possible to be optimistic about its societal effects. With the coming of the net, it seemed, people might truly now speak peace unto other people, and the strident shout of nations become the convivial chatter of multitudes. That the result of all of this truth would be justice and the global triumph of democracy was, if not inevitable, at least plausible.

That it hasn’t turned out that way is, of course, regrettable, if fascinating. The emergence of the new media landscape (drink!) as an information battleground (drink!) over which evanescent psyops manipulators flit like malevolent spectres looks set fair to provide the voters of the near term future with quite a few problems, and not a few opportunities for employment, but in a sense ‘twas ever thus. Propaganda is as old as Babylon, and horseshit as old as the horse. We will find a way to navigate the sewers, even if we don’t yet know quite what the next generation of buckets and shovels will look like.

But optimistic as I am on that front, I am assailed by a more general anxiety, and the cause of that is not fake news (drink!) but the pure, unadulterated truth. For we do, in truth, now all speak, one to many and many to one. But to listen to that conversation for any time at all is to learn that a very large number of people are evil, stupid, malicious, hateful, ignorant and antisocial or, as Thomas Hobbes might have put it if he had lived in this hour (and could write as good as what I am able to), solitary, puerile, nasty, brutish and fraught.

The greater threat to democracy may not, in the end, be Vladimir Putin’s patsies convincing each other that Hilary Clinton ran a child prostitution ring out of a pizza joint. That the wicked will believe others capable of wickedness, however bizarre, is to be expected, and democracies have accommodated the foolish since the Ancient Greeks. But it is not clear to me that democracies can survive without democrats. Government by the people requires a minimum number of people who understand the stakes, who are familiar with history, alert to tyranny’s seduction, people wedded to notions such as the rule of law, of due process, of the supremacy of Parliament and the separation of powers, of a mature and considered government acting after deliberation and with the consent of the governed, respectful of tradition but hopeful of progress, accountable to an electorate of engaged citizens. Such people are made, not born, by other democrats, and a mighty pile of them is needed to preserve the critical mass from which a polity, as opposed to a mob, is formed.

The risk presented by the internet is that we will, in sufficient numbers, decide that we have indeed heard the voice of the people and, frankly, being turned into cat food’s too good for them. That we’re not prepared to die in a ditch for the likes of the Comments Section. That in fact, the sooner they’re rendered into something we can spray on our lawns from a pump pack, the better. Democracy may die in the full light of day.

We didn’t sell any nectarine seedlings, either.