Retirement Party“A girlfriend he had when he was young used to make fun of his compulsive way of looking at himself in shop windows. Chaparro never confessed the truth, neither to her nor to any of the other women who passed through his life: his habit of gazing at his own reflection has nothing to do with self-love or self-admiration; it’s never been anything but another attempt to figure out who the hell he is.”A very very very engaging start to this book whereby we discover the nature of the author — the above Chaparro, and a budding Garcia Marquez — and of what is to follow in this book, I infer, with his requesting, from the lady judge, an old tank of a typewriter upon his retirement rather than a new-fangled computer — and then dodging the retirement party in his honour. A chief administrative worker in the Argentinian court system during what I gather to be that land’s ‘dirty war’. He is imbued with the very stones of the courthouse, and what is he going to do with the rest of his life, he asks. The question in my mind, though, is, if he is the author, who wrote this introduction? Wondering whether I have inferred correctly, is it an introduction at all? And is what follows evidence of how he used the typewriter?