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illustration by jonny voss



b y   A l a n   M c C o r m i c k

Ginger Baker, the seadog beardy drumbeater with Cream, has given up music to peer at people in flats with a giant telescope. He’s able to afford a huge one, twice the size of himself, and maybe 24x the size of his morning extended fleshscope.

He is enamoured by the diversity of life on offer in the various flat windows opposite his own: plain Janes; simple Simons; hairdo cockatoos; dogs with attitude; religious nuts; mentalists; and clinically sound saners. But his ardour and affection is reserved for the middle window at the top of the block: for just showered Lucy with her breasts like a two-tooth dog necklace and a tongue just peeping from her mouth.

Ginger would like to lie with Lucy, to towel her gently dry and feel that little tongue against his own. When he looks down he sees his own scope has extended, and so turns his attention from such things by performing the dance of ‘the seven thrusting knees and the big foot thump’, taught to him by a group of Somali sailors in a German-sausage-themed pub in Zanzibar.

He dances, occasionally peering at Lucy until she turns off her light, and dances some more until both scopes have retracted back and it’s time for bed, and dreams of drums beating through the night . . .


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