The Compendium of Degenerates – part 6

compendiumA jangle and disaster ongoing, what a whirlpool is Berlin, such bustle and so much zipping across one another’s path.
Reformers, suffragists, agitators, peaceniks, warniks, everybody has a placard.
Sometimes it seems as if there’s no one to show yours to.
The Committee of Concerned Citizens, the Ruhrkampf Solidarity Knights, the Anti-Separiat, the Methodist Board of Equality, the Daughters of Temperance, the Catholic Total Abstinence Union, the Clean Living Bund, the anti-Cigarette League, the Anti-Saloon League, the Flashing Astonishers, the Flying Squadron, the Fellowship of Anarch, the Kropotkinites, the League of the Cross.
So much coalescence ordered, so much dynamic tension thereby.
Otmar knew that as a pair of country hicks they needed to look after themselves, easy prey for the smart cosmopolitans.
Keeping tight hold on Ottilie, concentrating hard on the dangers all the time,
They first find somewhere to rent.
The courtyard had children wandering desultorily, scabby-kneed urchins, chilblained, freezing,
An old lens-grinder on the same landing,
The flat above is rented by two swells: Hermann and Milly. The first idea Ottilie has in her head is pimp and tart, but it will turn out that they are brother and sister. Three in the morning — the scrape of a bed on Otmar’s and Ottilie’s rented ceiling — deafening, like it was mastodons and blue whales up there.

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