White Teeth by Zadie Smith
“Every little trifle, for some reason, does seem incalculably important today, and when you say of a thing that “nothing hangs on it” it sounds like blasphemy. There’s never any knowing how am I to put it? which of our actions, which of our idlenesses won’t have things hanging on it for ever.” Where Angels Fear to Tread, E. M. Forster i The Peculiar Second Marriage of Archie Jones Early in the morning, late in the century, Cricklewood Broadway. At 06.27 hours on i January 1975, Alfred Archibald Jones was dressed in corduroy and sat in a fume-filled Cavalier Musketeer Estate face down on the steering wheel, hoping the judgement would not be too heavy upon him. He lay forward in a prostrate cross, jaw slack, arms splayed either side like some fallen angel; scrunched up in each fist he held his army service medals (left) and his marriage licence (right), for he had decided to take his mistakes with him. A little green light flashed in his eye, signalling a right turn he had resolved never to make. He was resigned to it. He was prepared for it. He had flipped a
coin and stood staunchly by its conclusions. This was a decided-upon suicide. In fact it was a New Year’s
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