Personalities came to inhabit me but they weren’t very nice. They were far from nice. They were famous, they were well-known. They were larger-than-life and full of talk! They came from beyond the grave, resurrected time and time again. They were the immortals. Brash and empty, they never stopped talking. They were like well-known TV personalities on a long-running soap show – they were the people we all know and love so well only we don’t love them. They were harsh and malicious and yet wonderfully glossy at the same time and we know them so very well. We know them and we hate them but we can never get rid of them. They keep coming back, you see. They keep coming back time and time again, turning up like bad pennies, turning up time and time again. We can’t get rid of them. My fingers crumble softly as I put out my cigarette; they crumble away disconcertingly into nothing. I’m reliving a faded echo of the life I once had. My fingers crumble softly as I lovingly pull out another John Player Special cigarette from its sleek new packet. I can already feel that thick luxurious smoke being pulled into my lungs; I’m tasting the enjoyment in advance and in my imagination I’m keenly enjoying every last molecule. I’m keenly anticipating the pleasure, keenly anticipating the pleasure. I sometimes wonder if the anticipation of pleasure isn’t the finest form of pleasure there is. It’s all the finer because it never truly can be experienced! We can anticipate it for sure – and how sweet that is – but we can never truly taste it. But what an edge this brings, what an edge… People talk about ‘the edge’ so much, don’t they? They talk about it but what do they know? The difference is, you see, that I really do know about the edge. I really do know about what the edge is. The edge is pure torment. The edge is pure torment and that’s what we can never allow ourselves to see – we know it but we can never allow ourselves to see it. The edge is composed of two things: one thing is the promise of what could be if only we were who we are not and the other thing is the utter stark lie that lies behind this oh-so-attractive promise! In order to believe that we truly can have the pleasure that we see in front of us we have to forget that we aren’t who we need to be in order to obtain this pressure. But even if we were successful forgetting this all-important fact we still aren’t going to get our hands on the pleasure we want so very much. We’re still not going to be able to obtain that pleasure because the one who wants to obtain it doesn’t exist. Even when we gamble everything we’ve got we don’t win, and if this isn’t torment then what is?