There are sets of things – four oranges, two candlesticks, a tree full of partially ripe lemons. There are also isolates – the single pear, the ageing apple, the plastic cover of a small container of picture hanging fixtures. Then there are the things that are distinct without joining a larger collection or withdrawing into singularity. The various bits of paper seem to manage this best. Although roughly associated, they refuse to form a neat pile or a properly common kind. There are envelopes and the letters within. There are notices, sheets of a guitar tablature and even an essay on the ‘cybernetic view of cognition.’ But without more effort on my part – more sorting, discarding and arranging – none of these bits of paper discovers a social reality. Finally, there are those things that are neither collective, singular nor loosely arrayed, but that instead act as a media for other things to appear – the table, the blue wall, the glass door.

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