Eternal Jew cover image from http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/eternal.html
I have rediscovered my zeal for another of those novels I started writing a while back… called ‘Trafficville’ ( a take on virtual realities, social media, gaming, cyber-wandering and war, among other things) and am happily reworking and adding to it via Scrivener.
Below is a teaser – a sampler of style, tone and characterisation: thoughts, criticisms and a simple answer to the question of ‘does it get you wanting more?’ would be more than welcome:
Take Mr. Lopez [Mr. Lopez will need a chapter – we need to understand his awkward day], who comes out every morning, picks up his Trafficville Herald from the front step where Jimmy Oldson has dropped it on his paper rounds. Then he walks out to Merrie Yngland Drive, turns left (most mornings, though some mornings, just for variety, he turns right) and goes down two or three blocks past all the mock Tudor homes and turns into Windsor Park. And then he kinda disappears for a long time. Then he comes back to his front door. Somehow or other he has lost his paper and it looks like a dog has chewed on his pant’s leg. He looks sour about the world and no one is surprised when he goes in and does not come out for the rest of the day. Everyone figures he must be independently wealthy but he doesn’t have any friends or even acquaintances who can help you not to make guesses. He doesn’t seem to work, just go for a long walk every morning, lose his paper on the way, get mugged by a dog and then come back looking dumped on. Maybe this is a habit Mr. Lopez wants to break…
Mr Lopez was independently wealthy; in fact, so independently wealthy (huge lottery win – everyman’s and everywoman’s dream, isn’t it?) he need not have worked for a hundred life times. So why was he living on Merrie Yngland Drive, which despite its grandiose name, was not in such a good part of town, and not somewhere more salubrious, such as where Marcello lived?
Mr. Lopez remembered his madre, God rest her soul, working 20 hours a day to get them, he and his two brothers and four sisters, not such good educations in the public system that really did not care too much for aspirations in the Hispanic. It needed pool cleaners and gardeners and street sweepers and call girls with Latin eyes. So, given this context and Mr Lopez’s experiences, Mr. Lopez had taken to hating most things American (particularly big fancy houses and attitudes of contempt for those without such houses), which Mr. Lopez, had he known Marcello (which he did not), would have tarred Marcello, one time famous director, as being a fine example of… So he lived small but tidy and played a random trick on any who might be watching – and he knew there were always some.
In the mornings he dressed dapper. Chino slacks and a pressed long sleeved shirt with a bow tie. He manicured his 5’7” self and waxed his thin old fashioned moustache. He knew people would watch him.He cooked a boiled egg and had toast and muesli. Then he went out and collected his Trafficville Herald from his top step.
He wandered down his tidy short drive to the street and turned left. He felt the eyes on him. He walked and left the eyes of Merrie Yngland Drive, (and others), then he went into another street, called Tudor Rise and walked into another set of eyes and players (so Mr. Lopez called them). Then he cut down a little walkway called, funnily enough, Little Walk, and that was where the dog lived. No houses fronted this walk – it was just back yards and gardens, and Mr. Lopez had discovered the dog on just his third day in this part of Trafficville.
The dog growled low and cruel and American (in Mr. Lopez’s mind) and flung itself at the fence and bounded and slavered so near the top, so near the top of the fence, just 6 inches and the dog would get him and tear out his Hispanic throat and its sibilant servant’s tongue. Mr. Lopez took off his trousers and stood in his boxer shorts which proudly sported a Mexican flag. And Mr. Lopez showed his contempt for the American lackey dog and flung just one pant’ leg of his Chinos over the fence and the dog growled and wanted to own that trouser leg but Mr. Lopez fought off the Yankee imperialist dog and recovered that leg, torn and slobbered on, its true, but he’d won something back.
He hooted with glee and put back on his injured pants. He though he would give all the eyes that had followed him, all those times, a sad story (but wouldn’t they secretly gloat) about the poor dumb peon who always seemed to run into a mean ol’ dog…
Down Little Walk a ways was a copse of dense bushes and trees, oaks and birch, perfectly rounded, thick with spring growth. That very first day Mr. Lopez, who liked a siesta, simply camped and slept about 5 hours in that cooly, cooly spot. Then he limped home, looking to all the world like someone who is eternally dumped on.
But once inside his pretense home he did a little jig and felt good about not only himself but about his new part in the world. And thus, via myopia and the worst of motives, did Mr. Lopez learn to re-love that world. He was become, so time would have it, a child again, re-born.
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