• Interest in professional fasting is declining.
• The professional, or hunger artist, is becoming as disillusioned with his audience as they are with him.
• He watches from the barred cage where he sits in straw with only a clock for company and sips from a glass of water, answering questions "with a constrained smile."
• Occasionally, he stretches out an arm so a visitor can feel how thin it is.
• He recollects the glorious days when villagers bought season tickets to his performances.
• The current reality that only children still marveled, that adults found him "a joke that happened to be in fashion."
• The hunger artist also remembers those most familiar with him and his profession, who believe in his truth without need of proof.
• They stand in stark contrast to the relay teams of watchers who keep vigil to ensure that the hunger artist does not cheat.
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