1970 "Now he realized that the great era of bipartisan plundering of America had begun."


From The Complete History of Adam Panflick Book Nine (in progress)

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We left our hero scratching his head in the wake of the Duffey Senate campaign (1970) when logic told him there was a way to win. Now he realized that the great era of bipartisan plundering of America had begun. There would be no way to win for decades upon decades.

Adam wrote to his friend Lew and asked what they should do. The result of this initiative was a decision to continue doing what he had begun to do when they moved to Stockbridge. Adam printed up some tasteful stationery, headed Network Associates. He and Lew would build a new network from the ashes of Jonathan's Wake. Were one capable of taking seriously such an enterprise, there might have been some future in it. But Adam merely admired the black on brownish writing paper and nothing ever came of it. 

It then occurred to Adam that he might get a job in the Berkshires. He drove up to Pittsfield and walked into The Berkshire Eagle on Eagle Street. A half hour later he emerged with a job as an assistant to the editorial writer whose name was Roger Linscott. To call Roger crusty would be a misnomer, but not entirely. Still, he had the aura of one who could well have shone among the highest luminaries of his profession, were it not for a scintilla of rejection of the sacrifices such a path ever entails. 

Roger, in short, was a person of stature, Gary Cooper-like. All Adam could have hoped for in a colleague. 

Thus situated, Adam contented himself with producing one or two editorials a day, hardly demanding. One day he wrote a short description of a thunder storm which had come and gone. He was a bit perturbed to see Roger, ordinarily languid, burst into his cubicle and exclaim, "Did you write that?" 

He thrust the page with the piece under Adam's nose.

"Of course," Adam responded, wondering if he was in trouble.

"That is the best piece of prose I have ever read. It is perfect."

"Uh."

The point of this incident is to demonstrate that Adam had little capacity to determine whether his work possessed quality or not. It was odd. But it was the case. And predictably the paragraph has been long lost.

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