The Urban Guerilla's Handbook: Winning for the People

The Urban Guerilla's Handbook

Winning for the People

Why did I pick it up? To this day that still puzzles me. Not like I made a habit of picking up litter from the pavement. Put it in a bin the regime's advertisements parroted, but last time I looked I wasn’t a trained bird. It caught my attention from several paces away, the paper cream, not the crisp white the authorities preferred, and then one pace further and the decision was made. I could always say I was doing my civil duty. Hardly pausing, a hand down and grabbing the stapled sheaves, then holding it in my hand as if it was my own document being hand-delivered somewhere ahead. Pacing on without looking left or right. No one called out. No black helmet tapped my shoulder. Maybe it was safe to look. Cautious glance down in time with my arm lifting that paper up a little, and my heart missed a whole heap of beats while I cursed my foolishness. In that instant I’d read the first of the two lines on the cover page.

A Handbook for the Urban Guerilla.

My hands were holding dynamite, old and oozing with oily beads of nitroglycerine, waiting for one small bump to explode my life into millions of minute pieces. I was a dead man walking.

If I let my grip loosen, maybe the pages would flutter away and disappear behind a parked car. Or more likely, they would scatter into the path of a black helmet, and if he hadn’t seen that it had come from me, he would soon call up the cameras to prove my guilt.

Of course a good parrot would go up to the next bin and just poke it in, and continue with his lunch break. No one would know, although there were rumours there were cameras in the bin to film everything that came in, and there were always the street cameras overhead to prove who had done the dropping. Would they believe I hadn’t read it? In fact that brought up the real question: Was it really a trap to check my loyalty to the regime? If it was, the file would be marked: Fail.


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