Naked, Janice bumps against the doorframe from their bathroom back into their bedroom. Naked, she lurches onto the bed where he is trying to read the July issue of Consumer Reports and thrusts her tongue into his mouth. He tastes Gallo, baloney, and toothpaste while his mind is still trying to sort out the virtues and failings of the great range of can openers put to the test over five close pages of print.The Sunbeam units were most successful at opening rectangular and dented cans and yet pierced coffe cans with such force that grains of coffee spewed out onto the counter . . . .

Amid these fine discriminations Janice's tongue like an eyeless eager eel intrudes and angers him. Ever since in her late thirties she had her tubes burned to avoid any more bad side effects from the Pill, a demon of loss (never any more children never ever) has given her sexuality a false animation, a thrust somehow awry. Her eyes as her face backs off from the kiss he has resisted, squirming, have in them no essential recognition of him, only a glaze of liquor and blank unfriendly wanting. By the light by which he had been trying to read he sees the hateful aged flesh at the base of her throat, reddish and tense as if healed from a burn. He wouldn't see it so clearly if he didn't have his reading glasses on. "Jesus," he says, "at least let's wait till I turn out the light."