Monday, June 12, 2006

Out of the time machine...

Theodore Dalrymple in TNC:

"...At every entrance to every bar and nightclub, out of which swirled the aural poison gas of rock music, stood men dressed in black who were originally called bouncers, then doormen, then greeters, and now—whether it is finally, I cannot say—admission consultants. Each with a shaven head and an earphone in his ear to inform him of trouble brewing elsewhere, these men raise the question of whether Lamarck was right about evolution after all: For before the establishment of bars and nightclubs requiring their services, men of such breadth—six feet wide, looking like animated blocks of concrete, members of a Politburo of protection—were never to be seen. Did they exist before, or were they called into existence, if not by necessity exactly, at least by prevailing conditions?

Outside the concert hall, the audience entered a different, alien, and hostile world, one in which untold thousands of young people, dressed with a voluntary uniformity, paraded themselves, raucous, drunken, exhibitionist, and volatile. The audience shrank away and scurried home, in an effort not to be noticed by these young creatures of ostensibly the same species as themselves; they feared to be preyed upon by them. I too felt nervous, but, at the same time, I experienced an odd feeling of familiarity about the situation, almost one of déjà vu. What exactly was I recalling?..."