One of my favorite moments from William Gibson's Virtual Light, which I highly recommend if you haven't read it:
Nightmare Folk Art was like that, sandwiched between a dead hair-extension franchise and some kind of failing real estate place that sold insurance on the side. NIGHTMARE FOLK ART-SOUTHERN GOTHIC, the letters hand-painted all lumpy and hairy, like mosquito legs in a cartoon, white on black. But with a couple of expensive cars parked out front: a silver-gray Range Rover, looking like Gunhead dressed up for the prom, and one of those little antique Porsche two-seaters that always looked to
Rydell like the wind-up key had fallen off. He gave the Porsche a wide berth; cars like that tended to have hypersensitive anti-theft systems, not to mention hyper-aggressive.
There was a rentacop looking at him through the armored glass of the door; not IntenSecure, but some off brand. Rydell had borrowed a pair of pressed chinos from Kevin. They were a little tight in the waist, but they beat hell out of the orange trunks. He had on a black IntenSecure uniform-shirt with the patches ripped off, his Stetson, and his SWAT shoes. He wasn't sure black really made it with khaki. He pushed the button. The rentacop buzzed him in.
'Got an appointment with Justine Cooper,' he said, taking his sunglasses off.
'With a client,' the rentacop said. He looked about thirty, and like he should've been out on a farm in Kansas or somewhere. Rydell looked over and saw a skinny woman with black hair. She was talking to a fat man who had no hair at all. Trying to sell him something, it looked like.
'I'll wait,' Rydell said.
The farmer didn't answer. State law said he couldn't have a gun, just the industrial-strength stunner he wore in a beat-up plastic holster, but he probably did anyway. One of those little Russian hold-outs that chambered some godawful overheated caliber originally intended for killing the engine blocks of tanks. The Russians, never too safety-minded, had the market in Saturday-night specials.
Rydell looked around. That ol' Rapture was big at Nightmare Folk Art, he decided. Those kind of Christians, his father had always maintained, were just pathetic. There the Millennium had up, come, and gone, no Rapture to speak of, and here they were, still beating that same drum. Sublett and his folks down in their trailer-camp in Texas, watching old movies for Reverend Fallon-at least that had some kind of spin on it.
He tried to sneak a look, see what the lady was trying to sell to the fat man, but she caught his eye and that wasn't good. So he worked his way deeper into the shop, pretending to check out the merchandise. There was a whole section of these nasty-looking spidery wreath-things, behind glass in faded gilt frames. The wreaths looked to Rydell like they were made of frizzy old hair. There were tiny little baby coffins, all corroded, and one of them had been planted with ivy. There we... [ Read More (0.6k in body) ]