October 4, 1964
5 The Parade
Dear Sir or Madam:
We understand that you have exiled us to the Garden District to protect yourselves from our dreadful memories. It seems a bit unfair to us, since none of us is willingly a Downer. We don't choose not to take Joy. It's not a style of life that anyone would choose. What makes us Wastrels is that when we take Joy, it gives us the most violent reaction. The body thrashes; the memories come back, edged in fire.
But surely this is not news to you. We write for another reason. We miss Uncle Jack. Oh, yes, of course Uncle Jack's shows are piped into the Garden District. But unlike the ones we used to get in the village, these seem to be recordings. The proof is that you keep broadcasting the same shows over and over! When I was a decent proper citizen, Jack always had something new to say. Surely that can't just be Joy-ful forgetting?
Couldn't you play us whatever Jack's saying at the moment? Or if you must play us recordings, could you at least swap out the recordings from time to time? Abandon us if you must; but please don't take away our old friend Jack.
Harrison St. Claire