Saturday, July 31, 1982

Dead fingers talk

When Robert got home in the early hours he found the house locked, and made futile attempts at waking us up, even banging on my window with a clothes prop'. But all to no avail. Dad got up at six and found him slumped blearily on a garden chair in the greenhouse.

Later on, Dad, Robert and I went to a book fair at Heber. The weather grey and dark. I’d expected a big jumble sale affair but I was disappointed that all the books were incredibly expensive. There were book dealers from all over the country. I saw copies of Dead Fingers Talk, The Soft Machine and The Wild Boys by Burroughs but they were all £6 each. A copy of The Paris Review with an interview with Burroughs was on sale at £8!

This really annoyed me because it seems like total exploitation. These books were not even first editions. As Robert said, it's a class thing, and successfully excludes ordinary people by pricing them out. It's the same with all the arts and it stinks. Robert bought The Gentleman’s Magazine from 1766 for £9 and Dad a two volume 1908 edition of Vaughan’s The Harp of the Sky. I got a 1962 1st edition of Into Orbit written by the Original Seven Mercury astronauts for £1.50.

We got back in a good mood and all in all it's been a good day. I didn’t end up going out: Lee rang to say the pub crawl had been called off. I’m glad; it’ll help me save money. Sometimes I feel so pissed off with the way this is written: the excessive length and turgid style is so dull and too repetitive.

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