Out in Palesa's yard Justice wanted to know, "There was this hmmm, hmmm what? Who rubbed lotion on you where?"
"Oh shit! Actually it was a gay club and the girls helping me were actually dragged away by the dykes. Except for the 'ladies' but they only did it for photo opportunity. And after it was over this gorgeous bouncer man came and rubbed lotion all over my hands, only he didn't stop there."
"Oh Justice. You just don't know me. What between Pastor way and HIV/AIDS I've mostly dedicated my sex life to Onan. I'm such a ninny."
"There was nothing wrong with you last night."
"Yes but . . ."
"Well I was very drunk. Also I was in a safe space and, I dunno, you're a big guy but somehow not in a threatening way. I mean you make me feel," he waved his hands about helplessly. "I dunno, secure I suppose."
"Well we may have been drunk but we did condomise so you have no need to feel afraid. Maybe you just suffer from a fear of latex."
"It feels kinda funny insisting on condoms. Like you're implying there may be something wrong with the other person."
"Or with you. It protects both ways. Never feel shy about that."
"What's the time? Look we're done. The whole yard is clear."
"Three o'clock, but we're only just ready to begin."
Farleigh removed his shirt and wiped his face with it. "Oh. Well okay. I'll just open another beer. I may not have your powerful torso . . . hmmm, but actually this is fun. At least I'm not bored. But is it really worth it? These little kitchen gardens can never compete with the big farms."
"But it's those big farms that are the problem with the world. It's the huge plantations which created the need for slaves and robbed us of our food sovereignty. It all goes back to that roman thing of bigger, better, faster, more. Or progress as they like to call it.
"But it leaves the general population dependant on commodity trading for our staples and that's where we're screwed. The fact that the robber-barons can trade with our food for the sake of their profits is a crime against humanity. It's through commodity trading that the modern roman empire is controlling our supplies. Look at all the staples like maize meal, sugar, rice. The colours of the packaging is mostly the old roman colours of red, white and green.
"After London became the new rome, we got the british empire which was just the roman empire in drag. Their colours were red, white and blue. You find these colours in France and the Netherlands too. France is particularly empirical with their metrication of the world."
"And the United States."
"Yeah. The New World because that's were all the original wealth went. And see how they have maintained imperial measurements. But the point I'm making is that all the staples not in red, white and green are in red, white and blue. Try and survive without buying anything packaged in imperial colours. Unless you are really really rich, you will starve. Look at the food riots. Countries where most of the rice is grown, their own people are struggling to afford rice. This is what AGRA is planning to do to Africa. Commodity trading! It's all bullshit. We're propping up the romen empire just to survive."
"Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa. It's a long story but basically the capitalists are running out of markets upon which to capitalise and have decided that African land is under utilised and they intend to profit from that. So they started AGRA as a front whereby they can look like they're doing good while robbing even more Africans of their ancestral lands. What's left of them post colonialism."
"But it's like you're saying the only way to save the world is to go back to subsistence farming. We'll starve."
"Like everybody else you're thinking Zimbabwe. But it doesn't have to be like that. And it doesn't have to be subsistence farming either. The important things are ruling out the need for excessive transportation, stopping the whole mono-culture style of farming, and sticking to original seed. No hybrids, no GMO's. But first and foremostly Africa needs to stop exporting food so long as there are any hungry Africans."
"I thought the reason there were hungry Africans was because we could not produce enough food."
"Have you any idea how much African fruit and meat is being consumed in Europe and North America. And other places. And because of foreign investment they get to buy it as a raw material with prices set by the market. I've just spent some months with my ngunu in Qwaqwa. She never buys vegetables. Her pension money is for maize meal and fish oil. All her veggies she grows herself during summer. Oh and some greens in winter but she stock piles mealies and beans for the winter."
"She eats meat when she goes to funerals. Almost every Saturday. Sometimes she will slaughter one of her chickens but only for very special occasions. Like Christmas or the day I arrived home."
"But still. It's too idealistic. What about the urban population? Think of people living in places like Hillbrow. How many veggies can you grow on a miniature balcony?"
"Sure. If we're going to decentralise, the urban population is going to be our biggest problem. But although they are high density areas, the majority of people are not in the urban areas. Well I don't know exact figures in South Africa but generally world-wide and especially in Africa as a whole, the masses are living simple lives as they do in Qwaqwa.
"Do you know what the bench-mark is? The determining factor. Access to piped water and, even more, water-borne sewerage systems."
"Determining factor of what?"
"Of who's who. The haves vs the have-nots. Ordinary plumbing, like indoor taps and geysers, well even electricity, are luxuries denied to the majority of people world-wide. The lucky ones have there own outside tap and don't have to queue at a public tap or risk using polluted river water. But generally it's only those humans following the system ie romans that have waterborne sewerage."
"What do you mean by water-borne sewerage? Do you mean simple flushing toilets?"
"So we're romans?"
"Absolutely. Look at your lifestyle. How many vehicles do you have for the personal use of your family, never mind the farm vehicles. Look how many people are working for you just in your home."
"But we have three cars because three of us drive. How does that make us romans?" By this time they were sprawled in the shade of a big tree exploring the contents of the skaftien Anna had packed for them from the breakfast left-overs.
"The mere fact that you can't see how excessive your lifestyle is, shows just how roman you are. The point is it's not possible for everybody to have this lifestyle. In fact already the planet is fucked up just from the small proportion of those who do have it. The only way the earth is going to survive is if everyone gives it up."
"What! I must stop using my flush toilet and dig a hole in the yard. You're mad. How is that going to save the world?"
"Don't worry Farleigh. You see that was the whole point. Adam was not supposed to have sons at all. It's not your fault that he did. But what was worse is that his sons were never supposed to have colonised the world at all. They had other options open to them. In fact the one that would have been their salvation was homosexuality. If they had stuck to just playing with each other they never would have destroyed god's delicate cosmos. They could even have continued their luxurious life-style because they would have remained finite. I'm sure it still holds true. As long as you're gay, that is non-reproductive, it's fine to live like this."
"Oh yes. I like you. That's obviously why you're called Justice."
"Just Ice, heh-heh."
"But do you really believe that? They were supposed to turn the world gay."
"Well I don't know if that would have happened. The point was they were not supposed to upset the cosmos. But considering how long they lived and how much they were admired, I reckon even if they had died out, homosexuality would still have had its place as the righteous option."
"Is it though?"
"Sure. It's not the moffies that's abusing n raping women and children. Anyway I reckon it was in their contract with god to be gay. In other words to leave the daughters of men alone and make no more babies. But some of them, instead of sticking to the agreement, started prostitution."
"Sure. They paid the girls for their silence. Y'know 'Don't tell my brothers. Here's fifty bucks' etc. When it became obvious that too many of them were doing that then god musta said like 'Fine, then you must marry the girls' in other words become one of the toilers, the natural father figures, but as I told you last night they used marriage as a tool of oppression instead.
"In the meantime, because they were bringing forth more and more generations while the original gay brothers eventually died out, the wicked hettie half of the family started a pack of lies to discredit homosexuality."
"Wow. So you really believe it was originally more righteous to be gay."
"For sure. Still is. There's even a very old roman word for the earth, gaia, and the original meaning of the word 'gay' had only positive connotations. It was linked to the word quick as in it's original meaning of having life but I'm sure it referred to the original homosexual livelihood that Adam's sons were supposed to adopt in order to preserve the life of the cosmos. The thing is, Adam's sons were not naturally a part of earth's life force. To be gay was their way to connect with it; to get permanent resident status as such. It's only in the past fifty years that the dictionary has added 'of loose morals' or some such to the definition of gay."
"And maybe because of their guilt at having disobeyed god they're now trying to destroy that life force"
"Hey!" Justice became pensive. "I always thought the destruction of the earth was a side-effect of their disobedience. Maybe you're right, maybe they're deliberately destroying god. I mean if that was the plan all along they're certainly succeeding. The world is fucked Farleigh. Oh I know from your vantage point on the sofa it can't look that bad, but it's bad."
"Firstly carbon build up in the ocean is reaching saturation point. The surface of the ocean used to suck up the excess carbon rapidly and then it would slowly filter down to the sea floor. The top layers of the ocean are now totally saturated and can only absorb carbon at the same rate that it is filtering down. Soon the excess carbon is going to build up a black greasy layer on the ocean. Crazy thing is when the so-called experts were calculating the carbon foot-prints of industrialisation, they forgot to include international shipping. When they realised this a couple of years back it turns out this footprint is huge but nobody wants to take responsibility for it because generally there are three parties involved. There's the country which owns the ship, there's the country which owns the goods on the ship and there is the country that will take ownership of the goods on the ship. And they all want to blame each other.
"Even in the atmosphere it wont be long before we can actually see the carbon build up. Already I've noticed that when the moon is just a small crescent it looks brownish. And I don't mean when it's low in the sky cos that can be attributed to local smog. I mean when it's high overhead. Check it out for yourself."
"But I've never heard of that before, the ocean thing."
"Yeah stuff like that is not considered sensational enough to make headlines. The global warming thing is even worse. Apparently it's been happening for millenia."
"Well then surely it's just natural phenomena."
"There are some people who claim that but if you had to plot the earth's average temperatures on a cartesian plain you will see that for millenia temperatures have been climbing at a minimal rate. The line on the graph looks almost horizontal. In the last one hundred and fifty years there has been a sharp incline. In other words the curve is hyperbolic and we're probably very close to the forty-five degree mark. That means the incline will become steeper very quickly and will soon approach the vertical."
"Check it out for yourself Farleigh. Don't sit around waiting for the sky to fall on your head. Look at the Pacific ocean. It covers nearly half the planet and one third of it is a garbage dump."
"Yeah. All the rubbish washed down by asian and american rivers or dumped by shipping, gets carried by ocean curents to a central spot, kinda like when you pull the plug in the bathtub. Actually there are two central areas, one to the east of Hawaii and one to the west. But because shipping routes follow the currents, nobody noticed the garbage. Then one day this rich dude who's been sailing his yacht away from home decides to tack his way back, straight across the middle. It was bad. He says for a whole week he sailed through garbage, mostly plastic floating just below the surface. And he was thousands of miles from land. And if the Pacific is like that I reckon the other oceans are much the same."
"Then it's over. If the sea is that trashed it's too late to try anything."
"Don't matter how late it is, we still gotta try Farleigh. There's even worse news."
"Although the focus of global warming is on the carbon build-up, it's due to greenhouse gases and some of them are worse than carbon dioxide. Because of industrialisation there are now more and more other elements accumulating in the atmosphere that were either never there or were present in virtually negligible quantities. Some of them are highly inflammable.
"By the time the global temperature graph starts approaching the vertical it only has to get hot enough to ignite any one of them that burns at a lower temperature. Once one ignites the heat generated will set off a chain reaction in the rest of them. Of course having the surface of the earth covered with networks of crude oil, and petroleum products by the barrel and tanker load, as well as mountains of coal in strategic places, and plastic trash lying everywhere, will just stick ol' earth onto the end of that chain reaction. Boom!"
"Oh great. So we'll get this spectacular global fireworks display and then the planet itself will become a ball of fire."
"If there's enough oxygen left."
"Let's just buy a gun and shoot each other. No that wont work, we'll need two guns. Oh god." He put his head in his hands. Suddenly he looked up. "But what about Kyoto Protocol, and Bali? I thought they had come round and were now sorting the problem out."
"Yeah right. They can't make it go away by holding talks about it. It's all much too little too late. In fact it's just lip-service to satisfy the bourgoisie. The proletariat, us masses who are already suffering the side-effects, are of no consequence. We wield no power and have no commercial impact as such. In fact those talks are dominated by big business money looking for ways to exploit the situation in the name of combatting it. But most of what they're really doing is using it as an excuse to exploit us further, like AGRA. Besides the majority of us are too concerned with where the next meal is coming from to be aware of global situations."
"It's like that? Us and them. And you've decided to join the proletariat versus the rest of the world."
"No Farleigh. Not the rest of the world. Not even the rest of the human race and there is a big difference. The proletariat are the ones being truly squeezed right now, of the humans that is. The whole world is feeling it. The plants and animals have been suffering much much longer. The only taste the bourgoisie have had is a tiny tap called load-shedding. And look how they screamed while the proletariat didn't really notice it; they've been suffering electricity shortages for generations, those of them who have access to electricity at all. Imagine when the going gets tougher. The 'us' vs them is actually the whole world including about ninety percent of the human race. In fact the 'them' may be even less than one percent of the humans but a lot of us are still helping to preserve the roman status quo, maybe unwittingly so. While, like I said, the majority of us, are too busy trying to survive to even grasp the big picture. The number of us who are waking up to the truth of the state of the earth is growing, but still small, but we are realising how desparately we need to do something really drastic."
"Eish! And we haven't really achieved anything here today either."
"But seriously Farleigh. Look at what they decided at Bali. First they want India and China to become completely industrialised. Why further develop their dependancy on fossil fuels when we know we need to stop using them. Meanwhile China has got the go-ahead to plunder Africa. We've had centuries of foreign investment which has caused widespread destruction and pollution combined with the wholesale export of all our treasures, oil, copper, diamonds etc and the local people don't ever benefit even one little bit. They say job creation but it's just slavery.
"Look at DRC where whole villages are kept as slaves under house arrest in order to mine the black mud, a substance essential to every digital gadget. They should by rights be the wealthiest people in the world. Instead they don't even have access to the very technology which could not exist without their slavery. Africans have benefitted nothing from foreign investment. Ever. Only the foreigners benefit. It's time to put a stop to it. All of it."
"I'm beginning to see your point. What did they say about Africa at Bali?"
"Just about nothing. The whole thing was hi-jacked by the people who are benefitting from the on-going petroleum industry. The main conclusion coming from Bali was 'Let's see what it's like in 2050' or something like that. It was really pathetic. I reckon they know that by 2050 it will be too late and if we don't rescue Africa before then there wont be any point in trying anymore."
"Precisely. So why are you even bothering?"
"Eish Farleigh. It's nearly forty years until 2050. That's basically the rest of our lives. We gotta fight back somehow. Come on."
"You're not seriously going to start digging again. It's late."
"Don't be daft. Let's go get another beer and I'll show you my crib. I see Mum's gone up to the house."
"Oh goody, the guided tour?"