Essay

Layer Cake [Fiction]

Accounting is necessary in business; it is necessary to keep one’s economic affairs in order; it has had its affects on the history of writing, the first written documents were warehouse lists, no? This is not true, not accurate? Of course, it is. What do you imagine the rise of the novel would have been without the rise of the bourgeoisie, or the Protestant Reformation? What would it have been without the rise of journalism. You do not know where I am going with this? I might not exactly know where I am going. The ride, you know, the ride, not the destination. You are not expected to; it would not be any special mark in your favor if you did know.

Without the ledger book, I imagine the novel would have been different, if at all. No? Imagine again. Memory? Legendary material, right? It has nothing to do with facts; it has everything to do with history, but then history is mostly historiography. Lions, my friends; until stories of the hunt are told by lions . . . Cervantes had what to do with the ledger, I remember Professor Marie X, who has been long dead, telling us about the webbed structure of Don Quixote, and how this was a mark of the novel, contrary to episodic long narratives like Rabelias’s Gargantua and Pantagruel.

I am not going to keep accounts for anyone herein; not in the way of ledgers or business journals or ship’s logs or your grandmother’s journal that your mother lets you look at when you are older and already married with kids of your own.

I am not the polite police, as I am sure that any policing of speech as we have it today runs contrary to the four freedoms. What someone says exposing his or her character—and what is character but what is built on the stage or stages of one’s life, all the world, if you remember Jacques, poor Rosalind? None of what anyone has to say is for me to censor; all ideas competing for acceptance must have no censor, right? I know the right in America does not believe so, but then neither does America’s left; each one the set of imbeciles they are because of the other. Political ping pong, policy ping pong is America’s favorite past time.

This is why I understand that we must suffer the speeches of Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton. I can tune out, turn away, not listen. I have control over what web sites I click, what newspapers I buy, what TV channel I watch, what news I choose to tune in; just as I have a choice what to do with my body—no? I do not. I should leave what I can and cannot do to my body—the my body argument for a woman’s right to choose has always left me cold. What is a woman saying when she says It’s my body, I can do what I want . . . I am always shifting to Leslie Gore singing “It’s My Party.” I do not want to be flippant. The issue is too serious. The basic human right to choose is at stake . . . but all we seem to do is want to provide a stake for women, all girls being a newer version of Joan of Arc when anti-abortionists get together. Burn the bitch seems to be the chant from the Right; and how are different from Muslim theo-cratists.

A rude woman speaks. Why rude? Have you decided as it has been here suggested? Could we say something other than how rude she is because of what she has said? Perhaps. Perhaps not. Why does that become the issue? It subtracts from the acuity with which we focus on the more important issue of Free Speech. We are all of us proctologists waiting to giver another peson an exam; the government is just waiting to get up your ass, you boss is always waiting to go up your ass; wives and husbands are up each other’s asses, and not for the purposes of pleasure. Everything without consent.

I look around me here as I ride the subway; a hideous scene I see; ugly, ugly, everywhere ugly without a bit of beauty found—and I do not care if people are good-looking or not—they’re fucking ugly.

A beast at every turn; mon menagerie a moi. The brute within’s without. All manners new, all monsters within; grotesques everywhere on parade; gargoyles would be preferable; at least they ward against evil. Horrors twisted inside too terrible to withstand. If I were Atlas, I would drop the ball.

So, you have decided for yourself that what she has said is rude? No? Yes? Maybe something else other than yes or no, which I do not go for, there being something that is neither yes nor no, or the notion that something can be both, Do you want ice cream? Yes and no—wait. Neither yes nor no. I do want ice cream but I do not want ice cream; so, give me ice cream and do not give me ice cream simultaneously.

Is it rude to set it here as it has been set in the context this is set up as . . . you wouldn’t know what was rude and what was not if the former fucked you in the ass or the latter laid down next to you in bed. And what if you were to say it has been said, either in a journal, or a blog, as part of what we call response-to-life-observations made; or, more exactly, as a work of fiction, whereby the woman is a fictional woman speaking from a fictional context? This would make it all around different. The what-ifs that would ensue if considering the fiction as fiction would be different than the what-ifs that would ensue from suspending our disbelief to the point of truth, and thinking that this is somehow true-in-the-world real and not one or another made up realisms.

You’re following me I know you can—what then must I say, I could ask, but will not. I will leave this as it is here, presented as I have presented it, represented as everyone is here, building characters as I have learned to do on this or that stage wherever I have been. Persona is person is personality is everywhere—anywhere really—this a stage for me, for you, for anyone anytime where I am now . . . what then are the unities of anyone anywhere anytime? A different set of considerations, no? Aristotle will just have to learn patience in your mind.

You’ll see, we’ll see . . . I cannot exclude me from any consideration I set for you to make, this fictional you, the reader you, fictional readers and actual readers never twainly meeting?

When we talk of a woman having the right to choose, we are really talking about the law getting behind her (without non-consentially fucking her in the ass) and supporting her right to choose—she has the right to choose irrespective of the law—it is a human right. Anyone who refuses to get this should stop talking to me; talk to someone else; find your own choir to preach to, okay.

The law ensures that her choice is one of a safe medical procedure and not something out of a chamber of horrors. And I do find it offensive that stupid people can in chorus express opinions that equate a woman getting an induced miscarriage with someone who blows himself up while blowing up a train station. They are not even close to the same thing; women who get abortions are not terrorists on embryos.

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