He spent an hour removing pictures from the bedroom wall. Images of icons, cars, animals, slogans, pin-ups, friends. He saved the blu-tack from the corners of each piece of paper and combined them into a ball. He put the pictures into a black bin liner, then he took the ball of blu-tack and dabbed it across the wall, removing any stubborn sticky debris. But the wall was pock-marked. Stains remained; blemishes that would never disappear. It was like a desert terrain, marked for ever by the craters of missiles and bombs once used to hold up some culture, some ethos.