b. That Brighton Beach exists, despite - or indeed because of - its consisting of innumerable little stones, is beyond question is it not?
Yet there is a profound difference between Brighton Beach and the common rabble which occupies it on hot summer days. I should perhaps confess that I was once a member of that rabble. When I was at school, I took part in a German exchange, and my German teacher organised a trip from London to Brighton when the German students came to stay. Imagine, if you will, an adolescent kleines c having a picnic on Brighton Beach. I was, it has to be admitted, part of what Gerard would call the common rabble.
What happened was that members of the party started throwing stones at one another, I suppose that you could call it adolescent fun, but as often happens on such occasions, things soon got out of hand. One of my school friends threw a pebble at my German exchange and hit him hard on the ankle. I then had to take my exchange to Brighton hospital, as he had fractured a bone. So I carried him off Brighton Beach and called for an ambulance. His leg was put in plaster and it eventually healed, but it did ruin his English exchange. He was in considerable pain, and relatively incapacitated for the rest of his stay. Fortunately, he made a good recovery, and I can report that when much later I was working in Germany, we had a joyful reunion.
As usual when I got into trouble, I telephoned my mother, and she came down to Brighton to pick us up. She was furious with my school friend, rang him up at home later and demanded an apology. Rightly so, in my opinion. We had collectively behaved like a common rabble on Brighton Beach, and the game, if that is what it had been, had clearly got out of hand. Yet just as Brighton Beach is composed of little stones, the common rabble is composed of individuals. As I demonstrated on Brighton Beach, we behave in different ways, and the little stones too can be used in different ways. We can play or sunbathe on them, but we can also throw stones, or as my school friend memorably demonstrated, use such stones as weapons.
c. The same may be said of Farmer Jones's field: it exists, and is made up of little bits of dirt, of various shapes, sizes, and consistencies.
I was going to take my German exchange down to see Farmer Jones's field in Wales, Sydney, but because of his injury, we decided to stay in London. Nevertheless, we can safely assume that Farmer Jones's field still exists, although it has since been made into a wild flower meadow, which is occasionally cut to make hay. So to describe Farmer Jones's field as little bits of dirt, of various shapes, sizes, and consistencies, would be insufficient. It, too, is far more than little bits of dirt, Sydney!