Friday, April 1, 1983


The weird dreams continue. I and several others were performing in front of an assembly in Egley Grammar School dining hall. For some reason we were dressed in skin-tight black body-stockings that also covered our entire heads. Inexplicably, I was then fighting a fire on a Task Force aircraft carrier, squirming and clambering quickly in a narrow claustrophobic space between wooden decks.

I watched an interesting TV programme about Hieronymus Bosch. One critic advanced the theory that Bosch’s obscure symbolism and bizarre figures are easily explained if they're looked at as Biblical episodes. Bosch was pious and “obsessed with sin” and so (the theory goes) his canvases are filled with sin and sinners depicted in loving detail. Perhaps he’s frustrated would-be sinner enacting his fantasies in paint? Maybe I’m being cynical (sin-ical)?

I was supposed to be making notes on Booker T., but I instead lazed about and watched footage of the 40,000 or more CND demonstrators who formed a 14-mile long human chain at Greenham Common. This enraged Dad who came out with some pretty bitter and bigoted comments, much to Mum’s annoyance; she's greatly impressed by the CNDers commitment.

Britten’s War Requiem provoked further friction, and as usual nowadays, I was left feeling lost as to a personal response to this sort of issue. I don't think CND’s peaceful thousands will achieve anything. Perhaps if they stormed the airbase and smashed it up. . . . But then down would come the scandalised cries from the nation’s righteous millions and the hypocrites in Parliament. Stripping a capitalist country of its armaments is like taking a knife away from a psychopath; either cure the psychosis or he'll simply find another weapon.

Dad’s hypocrisy (over Easter this time) again irritated Andrew and I. While Radio 3 hosted a programme full of bland sentiment about Easter’s Christian message, Dad sat conspicuously on a stool in the middle of the floor, hanging in rapt attention on the churchman’s every word. Andrew said it’s as if he does it for our benefit.

He uses these sporadic displays of zeal to prove to we his sons that he’s a committed Christian. Yet he still comes out with thoroughly unchristian tirades against the things he detests, denouncing Labour politicians as “pigs” etc. If he’s so full of Christian fervour why doesn’t he go to Church?

In the evening Andrew, Mum and I watched Woody Allen’s Love & Death, which we found really funny.

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