Born on Mars, the youngest of five children of unsuccessful Martian colonists from Earth, Bron left home at fifteen to become a male prostitute catering to older women, and it is thus that he first learns to respond according to the type and power of the person he encounters. This thinking in types leads to Bron’s occupation on Triton as a metalogician checking computer outcomes; it also leads to Bron’sweaknesses as a person—he is continually pinning labels on people, making them his inferiors: The Spike is a woman, sometimes a “bitch”; Lawrence is an old homosexual or queer; Sam is a black. In this life of types, Bron is either dominating someone or that someone is dominating him. Types exercise a tyranny over Bron, as he continually worries about correct behavior in society, whether in space travel, eating at a restaurant, or meeting a potential lover. Desperate to know the type of a person, Bron has no knowledge of the individual within the type, no sympathy for others. A devoted fan of ice operas, Bron is forever separating his fellowman into the ice-opera equivalent of the cowboys and the Indians, or the good guys and the bad guys.
The Spike, or Gene Trimbell, is described by Bron as the wholesome, healthy brat of Ganymede ice-farmers “living the romantic life as a theatrical producer in the swinging, unlicensed sector of the city.” This description, however, fails to account for The Spike’s theatrical creativity in directing and...
(The entire section is 529 words.)