Mar 302012

Have we arrived? Are we here? The place we are meant to be? In the place to which some god or fate intended us to reach? An intention that was in place from the very dawn of eternity, not that eternity can have a dawn, or a sunset come to that. A sort of enlightenment without the fireworks? Surely fireworks were on the menu! A patch of boggy Dartmoor, a gentle rain, a mist, Schubert on the little wind-up radio and we have to squat because it is too wet to sit down. In the midst of a would-be heated male companionship but so exhausted that our chilly fingers can no longer grasp the weapons that now lie unused glistening in the tussocks. Clever weapons that I should have been trained in many decades ago when my mind was still supple enough, in the sunshine, not down here in the labyrinthine depths full of strange snortings, a dark world in which it’s certainly better not to trust any living thing. Or dead thing. Or even things that claim to be alive but actually exist in some dimension unknown to our current state of knowledge.


    Priest-king or war-lord? Excuse me, I just need to go to the lavatory. That’s better, now what was that you were saying? The thing with foreign names is that they are so mysteriously attractive. Take Smith as a for instance, take it in your left hand and then in your right take Dumézil. Chalk and cheese, I think you’ll agree. But we do have to move on, we can’t squat around here all day. Pinky Dave Cameron, of course, is a fully paid up lizard dressed up as a castrated war-lord. The fact of it is, is that somebody or other got the bags mixed up, the contents spilt all over the Piazza del Popolo during a benefit concert for that poor beggar Berlusconi. We did our best to pick up the pieces, but many were stolen or were washed into the sewers. And we’ve never been able to properly sort out the ones we were able to collect. There’s no time. I know it sounds like an excuse but . . . please be reasonable. Time is money. And you know how while I’m dreaming of what to have for supper some other guys are busy hoarding all the available cash. I must add that it is also in part a question of categories. It seems to me to be a good thing that we can begin to see the complexity of it all but it does make simple decision making almost impossible unless we shut our eyes and stab wildly with a pin. Can we really call that decision making?


    I’m not convinced that she realises I’m making love to her. Not like the old days when the heat was undeniable. Jenny Diski, who I believe to be a woman, (LRB 22 March 2012) quotes Roger Ebert: ‘One of the reasons that America inspires so many road movies that we have so many roads. One of the reasons we have so many buddy movies is that Hollywood doesn’t understand female characters (there are so many hookers in the movies because, as characters, they share the convenience of their real-life counterparts: they’re easy to find and easy to get rid of).’


    Of course we like to pretend that we have roads here in jolly old England but essentially we only have rather damp patches of Dartmoor on which to squat and shout at each other, occasionally managing to strike a blow that’s got enough umph behind it to cause a darkening of the flesh. Where are you Michelle? And is this Michelle playing the part of a hooker? In this Movie?


Mar 282012

Autumn2006pics 033
An 'Evening Entertainment': last week we went to the Picture House together to watch the documentary film called Patience about WG Sebald and based on his The Rings of Saturn , about walking in Suffolk; yes, full of charm and wonder. And it is true that we were a threesome at the film, which is an uneven number for socialising (one thinks of chaperones and such arrangements, not that courting is our bag these days).

It was ‘On a Journey’; I get my copy of Rings of Saturn from off the book shelf and see that it was first published in England 1998, having been translated from the German original published in 1995. The black and white filming mimicked the photographs which are such an integral part of his Technik (in German where it means both the technique itself and the more mysterious knack of knowing how to do it), the impression of smoke and a shaky hand held camera, and a touch of magic.

 However, one wonders if poor dead Max would not have groaned to see the trickery of an image of his face being superimposed on the still photograph of some smoke rising from a roadside firework, which a researcher, ‘devotee’ or ‘fan’ had let off at the cross-roads where he had met his death in 2001. Max was a stickler about his disgust for stylistic “adornment” of any kind, whether photographic magical tricks, or the uncritical critical adulation of the Anglophone (English and American) Sebald Industry. Where for instance, I asked myself, were the Germans?

Ah yes, but perhaps you noticed the music during the film? It was Schubert, one of the tunes from the Wintereise , as I think it trying to remember now. It was possibly the last in that song series, Die Liederman (the hurdy-gurdy man) – Und er last es gehen / Alles, wie es will, / Dreht, und seine Leier / Steht ihm nimmer still – but without the words in the film version, the music was, as it were, unsupported.

And ‘In a Train’; I cannot recall whether in The Rings of Saturn he (the narrator) travelled by train. It is likely. In his Selected Poems (1964-2001), Across the Land and the Water, many of the poems describe journeys made , some explicitly some probably, in trains. Begin with the very first poem in the collection:

How hard it is
to understand the landscape
as you pass in a train
from here to there
and mutely it
watches you vanish.

Max wrote that one as early as 1964, indicating he knew his direction of travel if not the final destination even then as a young man, which was about the time he arrived to live in Manchester. The short two-stressed lines (in German) are typical of a great many of his poems: the clickety-clack rhythm of the carriage wheels on the rails (before the high-speed rail versions replaced them), and again reminiscent of Schubert and his frequent use of two repeating notes.

And his ‘Darker Tones’: “melancholy but without any hint of pathos”, as Alfred Brendal described it on BBC Radio 3 last night. It is Radio 3’s 8-day, all day Schubertiade, and it is in full flow now – The Schubert Industry – don’t miss it! The two repeating notes and darker tones, whatever was the cause (the effects of the Treponema Pallidum and mercury poisoning some say): for two alternating and repeating notes I particularly recommend you try listening to his Andante D929, but Patience – it is 9 mins and 36 secs long.

And do you not think Schubert would also have liked trains, if he had lived long enough to know what they were, and would  have written songs about train travel? Who knows, probably two-stressed rhythmic train songs to add to the near 700 other songs he wrote in his actual life, and perhaps based on poems by Johann Mayrhofer (Freund und Text dichter: 46 Schubert songs and 2 operas are based on his poems) before the writer committed suicide by jumping from the window of his office in Vienna in 1836 in his 49th year.

Max, and Johann Mayrhofer and Franz Schubert on trains, having had some choice in the matter – unlike trains of no return: Kadish Ofra Hazi, Kadish.

Was the word the beginning?

 Posted by at 10:17 am  Atelier, Old Men Travelling  Comments Off
Mar 242012

Lacan linked the "father" with the symbolic, with language. Here, the "father" might not be the father but some (any) mediating agent that is able to change the energetic lock of mother and child, enabling the further development of the symbolic function. So we can see the necessity of triangulation to shift the focus, to open up, and provide impetus to new themes and projects. Not that mother/child quite describes us, we are more like a pair of orphans long lost waifs in the wilderness. Lost in the wilderness requires us to find three landmarks – a triangulation to ascertain our position so that we might discover the onward stream.

    Keeping to the idea of three, having named Lacan as one of the three, two more events during the course of Wednesday of this week might serve to fill in the remaining two spaces. The second space could be filled by meeting a new pal during the courtse of cycling out through the maze of lanes outside of town. I was the guide, he the stranger. But he occupied a particular position as a researcher in robotics at a nearby university; an American: factors which offered another view, a perspective. Then later the  same day three of us met up to go to the movies. The film on this occasion was Patience (after Sebald), directed by Grant Gee with Sebald the absent hero and a cast of countless literary critics and others to guide us into new insights into the work of Sebald: in particular his book, The Rings of Saturn. It was beautiful slow moving meditation on that work which itself was a slow moving walk in which he followed chance encounters and psychoanalytic style free associations to build up chains of meaning to pursue his themes of European history and loss. Walking through East Anglia the associations erupted or percolated and created a moving if not terrifying opening to the glories and violence of patriarchy.

    And robotics, where does that come from? What are we, the patriarchy, trying to do, where are we going? But always bearing in mind the fact that we have probably never known where we are going. But nonetheless, we continue to set off hopefully and chock-full of delusions.

    We focus down until we can see a direction which interests us and then we can chase down the quarry, ignoring other siren calls.

    Lacan and Sebald, in their different ways, might challenge us to see bigger, different pictures, give us a foothold upon which we can begin to climb out of the deep betrayals of the patriarchy, the deep trenches of tradition and rules whilst goaded by the sharp sticks of editors, willing participants in the search for new songs.

    And another thought: I guess there were always two necessary wings of the Church. One formal, dressed up in glorious robes, rituals and tradition; the other, the mystics striding off into the wilderness to do what mystics must do and bring back the bacon of inner glory and news of the Other. God or viper.

Blame and Responsibility

 Posted by at 12:48 pm  Atelier, ON the STREET  Comments Off
Mar 212012

The suggestion of a theme has wafted along this corridor of scribblers, a mal-odour for sure, and we can't be sure if it is emanating from the Editor-in-Chief's office or from some 'crack' to be found elsewhere more interstitial and provisional. "She" doesn't have her offices on our floor anyway, plus nobody has seen her down at our lowly level for many years. Heavenly epiphanies are in short supply these days, but looking on the bright side this means we are equally spared most demonic visitations too, from the likes of Mr Magoo from Newswarp [or his goggled eyed offspring].

"Blame and Responsibility: how may we proceed in a post-Catholic era?" Our pythian viperette suggests as she respires the sulphurous fumes rising from out of the 'crack' between her legs.  There is a theme to chew on, and I am bidding for a triangulated methodology since traditional ways of proceeding are clearly out in this so-called post-Catholic age. Triangulated, like a stool – to sit on? You call them "dangerous structures when applied to us": presumably because triangulations are intrinsically unstable, restless and always on the move, slide-rules slipping sideways, and prone to warfare with two's ganging up against one's, and frequent buddings like children "popping out from God knows where".

OK, but one can start with the basics. Triangulated means three sides, and for the purposes of this design methodology I would suggest that the sides are equal, meaning it is an isoceles triangle. But although they are equal, the three sides are not the same. I'll say that again. Although they are equal, the three sides are not the same. Each side is completely different being made from different stuff. One side is rational and analytic, which is good enough for precision except we might waste a lot of time debating what 'precision' precisely means, and precisely what 'stuff' is and so on. One side is raw energy and power, which is great for farting and 'bottom sniffing' and those kinds of things, except fights are always breaking out about the Constituted Authority and who is in charge. The last side is the stuff of dreams, and the many voices in our ('dialogic') ears, and it is sometimes good for therapy too, but there is no end to the proliferation, like "all these children appearing, popping out from God knows where".

Three equal but different sides: well, that is the ontology done (in case you were wondering). Now lets deal with the epistemiology, and I am glad to say this is also simple. All three sides work the same way, all being relatively permeable and relatively reflective. So a lot of mirroring goes, seeing things from one side in the other and so on, and put together that is what makes the whole thing work: with enough precision, enough energy, and enough dialogue.

Let's get on, I am getting bored! It all boils down to the 'subjective' anyway ('subjective' in inverted commas - like Joseph Roth said in his letter to his Feuilleton Editor and friend Benno).

Blame and Responsibility. Yesterday I went to the 'Picasso and Modern British Art' exhibition at Tate Britain, and there was a black and white half-size copy of 'Guernica' as you would expect. So it was clear that Franco was getting the blame in 1937. But then there was also the photograph of Picasso in a suit and tie in 1948 at an 'Intellectuals for Peace' conference in 1948 looking decidely uncomforable, as if he hadn't wiped his bottom that morning, and then I was less sure who was to blame and who was taking responsibility.

However, there were also some powerful drawings by Picasso of the Crucifixion which followed his 1930's visit to the Grünewald Isenheim Altarpiece, and these reminded me of WG Sebald's As the Snow on the Alps in After Nature (2002), exploring the same master:

"Always the same
gentleness, the same burden of grief,
the same irregularity of the eyes, veiled
and sliding sideways down into loneliness."

There are eight long verse sections in 'Max's' writing on Grünewald, and Pablo's series of designs (Minotaure, No 1 1933 – Tate Library and Archive 203220) based on the Grünewald Crucifixion are similar extensive explorations into a blame and responsibility which appears to be being withheld. See for yourself -Isenheim-Altarpiece[1]

There I wasn’t . . .

 Posted by at 12:19 pm  Atelier  Comments Off
Mar 172012

There I wasn’t strolling along this delightful grassy track when an unwarranted viper spoke to me though perhaps the speaking part was merely my imagination. Over there, I can hear a laughing faun hidden behind that rock. And I can just make out a shrieking satyr wild dancing amidst the trees. Meanwhile there is this coil of serpent sunning herself but alerted by my thundering patriarchal footfalls. There was no claim to possess a licence, no enquiry as to the possible remuneration attaching to the position of editor-in-chief. Why on earth did I get off the train?

    Am I not supposed to know where I am going? Aunty Maggie bashed me around the head until I understood that business plans were all the rage. And if I was so pathetic that I had no idea where I was bound (hand and foot) then at least I should have the decency to pretend that I did. Rather like writing this piece – where on earth do I want it to go? Solipsistic hallucinations allowing!

    Triangulations, we must remember are dangerous structures when applied to us. All well and good when referring to lengths of wood or metal; Hey, that’s really strong. But mummy what is he doing here? Aren’t I good enough for you? Surely we don’t need anybody else? And don’t go away when I’m talking, or at least having a go at thinking, I like you to be around while I think. And then all these children start appearing, popping out from God knows where. Was it something that I did? I was absent, asleep somewhere on a grassy track, minding my own business, dreaming of being deeply implicated in some sort of pleasurable activity, the nature of which is very unclear to me. A sort of mist came down . . . you know, like the transfiguration – what is it that is hidden in that cloud?

    And then I wake up to discover an unlicensed editor in the nest.

    Welcome you little snake in the grass, it seems rather exciting to imagine you paying occasional visits. I better get the vacuum cleaner out, have a shower and comb my hair.


A Nice Triangular Arrangement

 Posted by at 10:51 am  OUT in the WILDERNESS  Comments Off
Mar 132012

For obvious and promiscuous reasons the genealogy and origins of King Ubu is uncertain, but it is known (you told me so yourself as I recall) that one of the other names he answers to is Ubi, which the Latinists among us will tell us means ‘everywhere’. In Greek everywhere translates as Pan of course, as in panorama and panopticon, and we should be open to the possibility of a divine or at least semi-divine (ie promiscuous) status in the unruly ruler between whose feet we have been scurrying about like children in our writing here these last couple of weeks, especially a ruler who has such a preference for revealing himself in wild places and wilderness. That Ubu is the Lord of Misrule is also clearly an unwarranted slur upon him, a nasty piece of negative briefing put out no doubt by Tory Central Office at the beck of Pinky C (pink-faced; as could be from too much hand motion), and disseminated by the Sun Newspaper under a ‘Ubu The Flasher’ headline.

 “How are we doing here? Are we on track?” These are the disarming questions which you asked during our meeting yesterday. I have it verbatim because, as you will remember, I was scrawling across the pages in my black notebook as you spoke. “It is like getting on the train and not knowing the destination,” you continued. “If we were going to Istanbul, we could say that Belgrade is closer than London…”.

 Yes, it is hard to give accurate answers as to our position when there is just the two of us and we happen to be inhabiting everywhere. Panorama and panopticon are the privileges we enjoy, but by Sisyphus they come with a heavy price. And the joke is truly on us! Having yoked ourselves together to the engine of this serial-feuilleton weekly-deadline writing there is truly no getting off. It is what is called a twin handcar on the railways, or a Kalamazoo out west, or Laufmaschine in the east …Handcar121
A life sentence of hard work, toil and sweat! If only we knew were going to Istanbul again and could depend on history and the reliable timetabling, powerful imperial engines, and kindly presence of His Highness of the Dual Monarchy. No wonder I have been making such regular toasts to the memory of Franz Josef!

 ‘Subjective’ is what we are, and hence the impossibility of knowing our position. Simply moving under our own steam and looking over each other’s shoulders as we go along we describe the receding (or are they approaching?) views as best we can. ‘Subjective’, and in inverted commas, as Joseph Roth had it –
“I should like to write a wholly ‘subjective’ book, in other words something completely objective.”(Letter – Hotel Beauvau, Marseille, 30 August 1925 - to Benno Reifenberg, feuilleton editor of the Frankfurter Zeitung. Roth was referring to his “White Cities” collection, which were eventually published posthumously).

And serves us right! For having once set off like this for Istanbul there is no getting off. In another black notebook I come across the following quotation I wrote down from somebody who set off for a long walk in 2004, “…Pain resumes… Think of Theta’s answer to why monks go wandering: ‘In order to fail’.” Still the privileges of this inter-continental panorama and panopticon are not insignificant. What views – and authentic subjects like Disgust and so on – What endless vista; there is no shortage of material to write about! Wipe the sweat from your eyes!

What we do need now at this point is an editor like Benno to make a nice triangular arrangement with us, and who can answer your questions, tell us how we are doing and where we are at from time to time… I am on the look-out. Here is Joseph Roth again telling a junior writer how it works:

‘By now you will have spoken with Reifenberg, and you will know my views on editing.  But just in case, let me say again: it goes against the grain of journalism to forbid an editor to make cuts.  Since I fought for this principle the whole time I was in Frankfurt, I can't very well turn around and say you shouldn't be cut. (It wouldn't do much for you either.) Not only is it right to cut and to make changes, I see it almost as an imperative.  Of the 40-odd pieces I've written, maybe ten appeared “unshorn”.  You are no soloist, you're a choir member.  You toe the line.  In questions of detail, you can argue the toss if you like.  But in principle you are duty bound to submit.  Perhaps, with your jealous love of every single line you write, you will become a brilliant poet, but you'll never make a half decent journalist.  The subject of your article is sacred to you.  Your article is a means to an end.  Your subject and you, the writer, are more important than your article.  As much more as you are more than the air you breathe out.  As far as your latest piece is concerned, it wasn't any good. Kracauer cut it. He was right to.  It was loose, inorganic, the description of a path, but not the path itself.  You have good ideas, good images, good turns of phrase.  But they don't grow together.  Your pieces are chain links without any coherence.  Read French feuilletons, read Heine's prose.  Learn about natural transitions. Your spade was the best piece of yours I've read.  In poems, atmosphere and rhythm fuse loose things together.  In so-called prose, the context must make the atmosphere.’

(Letter – Kaiserhof, Essen, 11 February 1926 – to Bernard von Brentano)

Above quotes are from Joseph Roth, A Life in Letters, tr and ed Michael Hoffmann, Granta 2012.

Mar 092012

Entre nous, you know how it is, spread-eagled as you are, by the gently lapping waves of the Arabian Sea, while Scheherazade is busy with her elegant pruning shears, somewhere out of sight beneath your heaving belly, severing what you intriguingly call your wifi connection. You are stuffed, as they say. But you don’t tell us with what. Where are the details of this gargantuan feast that you so greedily lunched upon with your bourgeois entrepreneurial mates, stuck in the environs of an anonymous oriental entrepôt.

    The little englanders are getting ready to fight, proudly washing and polishing their 1956 grey jet bombers, though like much else the years have had a seriously emasculating effect on them – both the little englanders and the bombers – though, they (the little englanders) are more interested in battling with their fellow citizens. Their short-sighted eyes can only peer into the next street which they can see is full of strangers. Although under the misty nostalgia for the iron lady when 900 dead was a small price to pay for holding on to some dots in the South Atlantic they are turning to Rupie Murdoch to await further instructions.

    Entre nous, we know what we like.

    Is Pinky Cameron allowed to talk to his old friend Rupie and if so what do they talk about. It must be in the manner of secret negotiations – that mutual back scratching, in the belief that nothing is remembered for long. They seem to believe that we will have little recall of the NHS in a short while. And will Blair hand over his responsibilities as god-father (in the mafia sense?) to one of Rupie’s grandchildren to Pinky? These questions must be just the stuff for endless rumination of UBU’s offspring whilst lying on the pebbles of Brighton beach. Is your Ubi the great-grand-son of Ubu or is the connection more distant. A mere wish of distant intimate coupling under eastern skies – somewhere near Lowestoft, I suppose.

    And whilst I think about it, please grab me a transcript, or better a You Tube video of the Pinky/Rupie chat next time you’re in Downing Street.

    And another thing . . .  I went to see A Dangerous Method, the movie by David Cronenberg with a screenplay by Christopher Hampton setting up a nice triangular arrangement between Freud, Jung and Sabina Spielrein. Everybody apart from Spielrein speaking in impeccable English, whilst she adopted a Russian (I assume) accent, resulting in a rather odd feeling that Zurich and Vienna had been transported to some English home counties setting only with the addition of Keira Knightley adopting the Russian accent together with the bodily contortions of a famous hysteric patient. After all, I suppose, the British are far too full of phlegm to stand for any of that hysterical nonsense – surely the hysterics are all foreigners. Mind you Jung, played by Michael Fassbender, had a good try at spanking and indeed beating his patient. And Freud played by Viggo Mortensen endeavouring to maintain (and failing) his authority. For me it was a rather disappointing experience, especially as I’ve been reading the rather more serious Darian Leader’s What is Madness? And consequently was rather looking forward to more psychoanalytic stuff. Mind you, the settings were rather lovely and wasn’t Jung lucky to have such a wealthy wife who tolerated his affairs and bought him a rather swish yacht.


A Taxonomy for Entrepreneurs

 Posted by at 10:17 am  Old Men Travelling  Comments Off
Mar 082012

While Ubi was sleeping off his huge lunch on Monday on the beach in front of the Arabian Ocean, his smooth round belly rising and falling and the regular breath issuing from his open mouth with loud snores, Scheherezade crept in to the plus petit chambre behind the throne and cut the wifi connection here. Appararently her 1003rd Tale was not to her liking and she has grown peevish in her maturer years.

So you might like to consider a taxonomy of entrepreneurship during the interlude. Because of course not all entrepreneurs are the same; Pinky Cameron is one of a very particular kind, and we might like to know the sort he is the better to distinguish him from some of the others.

"Bourgeoisie was the old way of describing the genus", Scherezade says as she emerges from the little room, hitches ‘her’ trousers up and adjusts ‘her’ flies. Those more familiar with Est-Politik-Sprech might still prefer that word to entrepreneur
anyway. Slavov Zizek does in his last essay in the LRB (26 Jan 2012). The Revolt of the Salaried Bourgeoisie was its title, and the discussion was on the hegemonies
of power that arise through the “privatisation of the general intellect”; not
just the power exercised by professional classes (ie which continues to provide
their ample ‘fat cat’ opportunities to charge for everything on the basis of
scarcity), but also the power exercised through the world of ideas, including through
our computers and the worlds they inhabit. In other words, including THROUGH

Slavov was writing in the context of the emergence of a possible new class which inhabits and works in what could be called the “Life in Common”. It is the way of being networked according to Slavov (referring to the philosophers’ Hardt and Negri latest book Multitudes) which has arisen, this new domain of shared knowledge
and new forms of communication and co-operation. Like Ubi himself the domain is
called everywhere, but it should be distinguished from the global, which of course is entirely owned by the ‘fat cats’ these days. The Commons are open and inclusive, and composed of innumerable internal differences (so they are not like ‘the masses’ and so on). The Commons are also socially diverse (‘biopolitical’ is the posh word; meaning it is not just about economics, it is about everything – everything in life that is).

Ubi gives a sudden snort, and begins waving and grappling with his arms, muttering wildly and blowing kisses. He appears to have encountered a Devi Goddess in his dreams.

Here I am sunning myself for two weeks on the coast of the Arabian Sea with my old Russian friends. What we have in common is our sharing the dreamy delights of vacation time Asclepian style, but we have our other differences. For instance, I tried a novel conversation gambit on one of the Russian men this morning after
breakfast. Being more or less of the intellectual bourgeois type myself, I
shall call him Alexei, and myself Maxim to disguise our real identities.

Hello, says Maxim. Hello, replies Alexei. We are beginning in workable English as you can already tell, and Alexei continues with his familiar and very detailed explanation of his work as a genius of nuclear reprocessing material which of course Maxim has
heard from him several times before over the last few days.

When were you born Alexei, 1948, Maxim suddenly interjects.

I was born in 1951, Alexei replies after a pause. Maxim writes down the two dates on a blank piece of paper. Da, he says pointing at one of them, and then, Da, again pointing at the other and drawing a line between the two.

What is your first recollection of England? Maxim begins again smiling at Alexei. There is an even longer pause.

My first recollection of Russia was in 1956, Maxim continues still smiling. We lived near an aerodrome in the east midlands and one day on a walk with my father he pointed at the large grey jet aeroplanes lined up in a row on the tarmac on the other side of the barbed wire perimeter fence.

"Do you know what they are?”, my father asked me.

“No” I replied.

“They are bombers and they fly to Russia”.

What is your first recollection of England, Maxim asks again, but Alexei appears to have suddenly lost his command of English.

In the taxonomy of entrepreneurs, the Russians clearly belong to a different brand than I do, a brand where silence is also a valuable commodity. Call me Intellectual Bourgeoisie, but call them Survivor Bourgeoisie. They are of the Uncle Scrooge McDuck’s type, The Tougher Than The Toughies and I admire them! Comrades!

And superpink Pinky Cameron? What brand of bourgeoisie is he? He is of a very different breed than the Russian entrepreneurs. You see his kind out and about in cities and the countryside, usually dressed in tweed jackets and corduroy trousers. They are called the Antiquated Bourgeoisie. In literature they are the ones who always write for full effect (you know the novelists I am referring to and there is no need for me to name names!). In politics it is the same, only it is full effect speaking instead of writing. And they are addicted to the idea of leaving monuments after them, which they usually achieve in doing… as any kind of atrocious legacy will do.

In general they are also unaware that the imperium of Ukania ended fifty years ago (probably about the time of Maxim’s first recollection of Russia on the walk with his father). And so on…

…Ubi has awoken and in order to properly disillusion him says he wishes to conjure Cameron into his presence for an audience as soon as possible.

Say the magic words after me:

“Franz Josef”.