I was putting on the uniform of conformity. Putting on the uniform. Putting on the uniform. Putting on the uniform of conformity. “Oh yes” I said, “I’m conforming to the system and that’s so great.” Boy oh boy did it feel good to conform to the system. It was a buzz. “This is great” I said to no one in particular, “What a great idea it is to conform to the jolly old system. It’s such a cool thing to do. It’s a real neat idea”.
I was putting on the uniform of conformity and it was great. Putting on the shoes of conformity, the socks of conformity. The trousers of conformity. I was putting on the uniform of conformity and it suited me rather well. “Damn it I’m looking pretty good,” I told myself, “I’m really going to look the part in this uniform of conformity.” I looked at myself for a while in the mirror. “It’s going to be so cool,” I said out loud, after studying myself at length, “the system’s going to create my identity. The system’s going to tell me who I am and what to think and where to go and what to do when I get there…”
“It’s going to be A1” I said, “It’s going to be Ace! The system’s going to tell me what I like and what I don’t like. The system’s going to tell me what my life is all about. It’s going to tell me what my interests are and what my goals are. The system will arrange for me to have lots of friends to share my interests with. The system’s going to tell me lots of cool stuff that I need to know. Stuff that I can have knowledgeable discussions about with my new friends. It’s all going to be so good…”
Just then I noticed that my leg was suddenly feeling very warm in an unpleasant sort of way and I snapped abruptly out of my fantasy to find myself back in the living room of my squat in Beaminster House, just off the South Lambeth Road. I was slumped sideways on the stained and discoloured sofa that I had rescued from a skip when I had moved in. The door to the apartment was open and somebody had emptied the rubbish bin over me as some kind of prank. I was festooned with all sorts of domestic waste. Bits of meat and shredded cabbage were caught in my beard, although it struck me on reflection that they might be from the doner kebab I had had the night before.
Toby the talking dog was pissing on my leg. That’s what had woken me up. He pissed and he pissed and he pissed until I thought he’d never stop. I wondered how he could possibly piss so much. Finally he uncocked his leg and walked away, an oddly human expression of contempt visible on his face. Toby clearly felt it unnecessary to say anything on this occasion…