Ageism works in both directions. As a teenager in the public eye, people would talk condescendingly to me. When you get older there's this feeling that you have to start carving up your face and body. Right now I'm in the middle ground - I think women in their thirties are taken seriously.
So - I am n-nothing more than - than a bloody job?! On top of not knowing why you must look after me - you only jumped at the chance to help me because your - that V-Vampire thought you couldn't?! What are you, some - some child?!' 'I am no child, human!' 'Oh I would not have thought so, ' she breathed condescendingly sending his blood to boil despite the ring, 'if it were not for the fact that only children react so wondrously juvenile when faced with such a choice! You bargain my life over a show of bravado! And where is your brother, Christian?! He has not been here to see your brilliant work as my watcher, has he?!
In the language of the day it is customary to describe a certain sort of book as 'escapist' literature. As I understand it, the adjective implies, a little condescendingly, that the life therein depicted cannot be identified with the real life which the critic knows so well in W.C.1: and may even have the disastrous effect on the reader of taking him happily for a few hours out of his own real life in N.W.8. Why this should be a matter for regret I do not know; nor why realism in a novel is so much admired when realism in a picture is condemned as mere photography; nor, I might add, why drink and fornication should seem to bring the realist closer to real life than, say, golf and gardening.
As the seemingly well-intentioned French journalist spoke about Africa's scarcity and its limited resources, Nine smiled to himself almost condescendingly. He considered such statements an absolute joke. Africa did not, nor did it ever have, limited resources. Nine knew something the journalist obviously didn't: Africa was the most abundantly resourced continent on the planet bar none. Like the despots who ruled much of the region, and the foreign governments who propped them up, he knew there was more than enough wealth in Africa's mineral resources such as gold, diamonds and oil - not to mention the land that nurtured these resources - for every man, woman and child. He thought it unfortunate Africa had never been able to compete on a level playing field. The continent's almost unlimited resources were the very reason foreigners had meddled in African affairs for the past century or more. Nine knew it was Omega's plan, and that of other greedy organizations, to siphon as much wealth as they could out of vulnerable Third World countries, especially in Africa. The same organizations had the formula down pat: they indirectly started civil wars in mineral-rich regions by providing arms to opposing local factions, and sometimes even helped to create famines, in order to destabilize African countries. This made the targeted countries highly vulnerable to international control. Once the outside organizations had divided and conquered, they were then able to plunder the country's resources.