That pure Cane Spirit since 1848.
Friday, April 28, 2006
Thursday, April 27, 2006
AAApparently, it’s all a life metaphor. Each day repeats. We’re passive. We’re waiting.
But then, and this is where Samuel Beckett’s (see below) play shows such genius. Life IS a bit of a life metaphor, isn’t it?
How very true that is.
So here is my theory:
Blogging’s the same.
OK it’s brief but am I right or am I right?
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
The maze of passageways somehow returned me to the door of our suite. With a slight hesitation, I looked in to see how things now stood.
Bananas had Ayres in a chair with a towel over his head and a brandy in his hand, calming him, while the butler still had his finger in the wall, and was holding the cloth to his eye where Ayres had viciously punched him.
“Did you find anyone Maroon?” Asked Bananas as I entered.
“Not yet GB, This place is a warren.” I explained.
“How are you Ayres?” I enquired.
“Oh, I’m fine, just dandy me! Damned idiot that you are Maroon!” he spluttered.
“I’m not sure I like your tone Ayres,” I replied, not a little put out. We had probably saved his soul from who knew what, and his gratitude was definitely on the thin side.
“Try upstairs Doctor.” shouted the butler from the lavatory, “If you would sir, only my finger’s gone numb.”
Gorilla Bananas nodded in agreement, and as I stood to go, added quietly:
“Maroon, when you do find someone, there’s no need to explain that we were carrying out a hydropathic exorcism and nearly drowned our friend. We must spare Ayres that indignity.”
Once again I marvelled at the altruism of that great ape.
Sure enough, on the next floor I found Doctor Evil in discussion with a group dressed in white coats.
Remembering Bananas’ injunction to keep the facts to ourselves, I beckoned him over, so that the others would not hear.
“A word if I may, Doctor Evil.”
“There’s been ‘an occurrence’ in our bathroom.”
“Just open a window.”
“You don’t understand, It’s bigger than that.”
“I think we need a plumber.”
“Was it Mr Bananas? His diet - all that fruit?”
“No it was Ayres.”
“Travel upsets the strongest constitution.”
“It wasn’t the travel that upset him.”
“A chop maybe? You have to be careful with pork.”
“No, it’s my fault. All the gurgling, I ignored it.”
“The warning signs, Dr Maroon.”
“He made so much noise.”
“Did he by Jove? How awful.”
“I’m afraid he has done considerable damage.”
“I’ll give you some ointment for him.”
“It was such a struggle you see.”
“Dear me, the poor fellow.”
“It loosened the plaster off the bathroom wall.”
“That’s what Eater said when he saw it.”
“My butler is involved?"
“Your butler has his finger in the orifice now.”
“That sounds like Eater.”
"He’s stopping further leakage."
“He took one in the eye as well I’m afraid.”
“I think Ayres was aiming for me.”
Doctor Evil leant back and took a deep breath.
“Right,” he said, “you return to your suite, and I shall see if I can find anyone willing, I mean qualified, to come and investigate these remarkable circumstances.”
For the first time that day, I was of light heart, and could return to my associates in the knowledge of a job well done.
Saturday, April 22, 2006
Previously, on Gothic….
As I wandered that labyrinth for assistance, the momentous meeting in the library of those two giants, came back to me yet again…..
….Ayres stood and turned suddenly; “Miss Redhead! How do you do?” he said, extending his hand to an obscene statue of Pan.
In theatrical delight, Miss Redhead took it and what’s more, pinched his cheek in a startling display of familiarity.
Ayres, always the broken reed in the presence of the fair sect, fawned and chuckled.
Oblivious to all, Evil and Bananas stood regarding each other for the first time in the flesh.
“Ah, Mister Bananas, we meet at last!”…..
After a brief pause, Doctor Evil made for Bananas, taking his hand in friendly grasp, while Miss Lilly Redhead arranged herself on a chaise longue, indicating to Ayres that he should take the small pouffe at her side, which he did with lapdog enthusiasm. A small brown lapdog, it seemed to me, with liquid eyes, glossy coat and damp snout.
To my shame, the smallest barb of jealousy rent my heart asunder.
I now know that the wanton seductress had specifically chosen the unworldly Ayres as target for her charms, since he was obviously the most susceptible of our company to her mesmerising feminine deceit.
That shameful Salome, plying her blandishments, enticing poor honest Ayres to the very rim of an abyss of carnality, Byzantine in its splendour, and he, the innocent fool, eager to throw himself onto those full red lips, like a lost soul cast into the gaping maw of appalling pleasures unending…
As I say, it was only a momentary prick of envy, quickly forgotten.
Like a photographic plate, each the antithesis of the other, Evil and Mr Gorilla Bananas stood in silent mortal struggle, striving for mastery, the welfare of all mankind in the balance.
“Ghastly weather gentlemen,” said Doctor Evil, “doesn’t it ever let up in this godforsaken burg?”
"But we thought that you had somehow brewed up…" began Ayres, momentarily distracted from his unseemly tête-à-tête.
“…this weather? No. My powers do not extend that far…Yet!” Said the mad scientist, still holding Bananas’ hand in greeting and in which he now contrived to wiggle his middle finger, much to the dishevelment of my dear friend, the greatest of detectives.
"We find it bracing, actually." Said Bananas. “Perhaps, if I may have my hand back…” he continued, pulling free and wiping his hand unconsciously on his waistcoat, “…you would be so good as to have your butler show us to our accommodation.”
“Wouldn’t dream of it, my hairy friend,” replied the great but flawed scientific genius, “that pleasure should be mine,” he concluded ambiguously, a malign smirk now playing upon his suave face.
Behind him, Miss Redhead and Ayres giggled at something. I was sure that the devilish Delilah had passed something into Ayres’ silly sweaty schoolboy palm.
“Oh I can’t wait to show you what I‘ve done with the rooms,” said the eager doctor. “I have placed you all together in a suite, three bachelors gay.”
“I’m not a bachelor gay,” I protested, “there’s Mrs Maroon.”
“Of course you’re not” replied the excited necromancer with a wink and a pursing of his lips.
Behind him, Miss Redhead whispered something close in Ayres ear, at which he sniggered, slapping his knee.
As a juvenile hysteria now gripped Ayres, he kicked his small Gladstone over, spilling its contents at the feet of Evil.
“Save us mighty Mithras!” wailed the fiend, as he cowered back from the crucifix the bottle of holy water and the garlic, pulling his cloak over his eyes with a flourish.
"Did you ever see anything so hideous?" He asked after a moment, stooping to pick up the crucifix. “I mean there’s something to be said for realism, but my word this is awful…” he paused, "is that Tuscan garlic? Oh please tell me it is, you know, you just can’t get anything like that round here. Peasants the lot of ‘em, and just try asking for olive oil…" he paused again “what‘s in the bottle?”
“Holy…” began Ayres.
“…Gin.” finished Bananas.
“Holy gin eh? You rogue Sir Kim! Must try that some night! Come, I’ll show you your rooms.”
But before he could, one more curious incident springs into my memory among the hundreds of that terrible adventure. We stepped from the library in time to witness the arrival of a Scotch noblewoman, Lady Samovar, the renowned Lady of the Isles. Some staff were lined up to greet the great highland personage, among them the flame haired comedian in the loud suit. She was led in by Mister McShae, whose purpose as piper on the battlements was now clear to us.
Mister McShae it had to be said, had suffered some terrible physical and mental anguish. His clothes were smouldering yet and in his arms he carried the charred remains of some faithful gun dog.
The loud checked japester threw a pail of water over him.
“Thanks Jokey.” said McShae.
Doctor Evil watched in silence, shook his head slowly, then turned to conduct the introductions.
“May I present a lady from your part of the world Dr Maroon. She sailed yesterday by steamer.”
“Oh,” I encapsulated, "did you come by Barra?"
“No, McBraynes.” she replied.
“Badoom tish!” Exclaimed the ginger Jester.
Mr McShae flinched.
“Struck by lightnin’," he said, “if it wasnae fur mah apparatus, I’d be deid!”
“Oh well, that was lucky,” said Ayres.
“Lucky? Whit waas lucky about it? Ma bag iss in tatters! Ma chanter is shot and ma drones are reekin’!”
“I thought he was walking funny,” I hypothesized.
“Ay thang yew” exclaimed the red haired vaudevillian needlessly.
At last we came to our quarters. While Ayres stayed in close confab with the Lady in Red and I took the opportunity to pour some welcome refreshments, Doctor Evil took Gorilla Bananas on a tour of our sleeping arrangements.
I could see on their return that my remarkable friend was far from pleased.
“Good, good.” smiled Dr Evil, “I knew you’d appreciate my efforts Mr Gorilla Bananas. I like to make everyone feel at home, here at Castle Alucard.”
When they had gone, and we three were at last alone, it was Bananas, not the evil doctor, who appointed us our rooms.
“The nerve of the man” he stuttered in a tight lipped fury.
“Maybe he’s just trying to be a good host,” I replied in confusion. "He is American after all."
“No Maroon, he’s insulting us, trying to upset my faculties with his foolish little stratagems.” stated that master of deduction.
“Anyway, you’re in that room Maroon.” he said, indicating the relevant door.
I must say, I was rather pleased with it. Dr Evil had indeed done his homework. It had a low hammock covered in zebra skins slung among a bamboo climbing frame. There was also a trapeze and a pneumatic tyre suspended from a roof beam. Two gigantic bunches of bananas (my favourite fruit) and a colourful African mural on the far wall, finished off the splendid billet.
When I expressed my delight to Gorilla Bananas, he merely snorted, momentarily baring his teeth.
Not for the first time, was I confused by the superior workings of my remarkable friend’s intellect, but I held my peace and joined him and Ayres in our little drawing room for a tincture or two before we dressed for dinner.
I found my associates discussing the charms of Miss Lilly Redhead.
“Simply enchanting.” said Ayres.
“She’s certainly something.” said Bananas.
“You’ve changed your tune Ayres, what was all that vampire rot you were spouting in Baker Street?” I contested.
“Maroon, Maroon,” smiled Ayres, waving my challenge away with his hand, “A sophisticated lady like that can have an effect on a man far beyond reason. I was momentarily unhinged by her presence, her allure, her charisma, her…”
“Cleavage” said Bananas unkindly, “be careful of the Red Lady, Ayres. You could fall under her spell.”
“Yes,” I added glibly, “we wouldn’t want her biting your neck.”
“She can bite my neck if she wants to,” mumbled Ayres with a dreamy smile.
“What was that?” demanded the amazing ape, a shadow of concern falling across his noble visage.
“In fact, she can bite me anywhere she wants,” Ayres continued, with an unpleasant little laugh.
“I don’t like the look of this, Maroon” said Bananas seriously.
“I might bite her back,” muttered Ayres, ignoring us.
“Her back? Really Ayres, I don‘t think…” I remonstrated.
“He means ‘in return‘.” explained the astounding ape. “What did the Lady pass to you in the library Ayres?” he continued, “some trinket, some occult amulet perhaps, yes?”
“Why, nothing…I don’t know what you mean Bananas…can’t a fellow….it’s mine…and you can’t have it!” shouted the indignant Ayres, his hand moving to his jacket pocket.
“Follow my lead Maroon,” hissed Bananas, “ and be prepared to offer any assistance. This is worse than I thought. We may already be too late!”
Gorilla Bananas now stood to his full imposing height and stretched out his palm.
“Give it to me.” He commanded.
Ayres stamped his foot and withdrawing his hand from his pocket, threw the object straight at Bananas.
“Take it then, you beast” he ejaculated.
With a shrieking jungle lunge, the primate pounced on protesting Ayres and dragged him in a flail of arms to the en-suite facilities, the only hope of salvation for Ayres now, was that a thorough hydropathic douching would douse the infernal flames that threatened to take hold of his weak debauched mind.
Before I followed, I stopped to look at the thing now resting on the rug.
It was a small tin disc fastened to a pin.
It read ‘I heart Lilly‘.
“How curious.” I thought, as I rolled my sleeves and headed for the washroom.
Thus then were the antecedents set for the fracas in the lavatory.
Friday, April 21, 2006
I didn’t sleep so good. Sleep so good I didn’t.
I nightmared that a hat-genteel Lady Whitegloves upturned upon the threshold step of the House of Ayres.
Stepstanding, she smile-asked for roof donations for the parish steeple-house.
Ayres, bristle-bearding, foot blocked the door and weight shifted his shoulder, a buttress doubled against feeble charity.
“Mr Ayres, so nice to meet you at last.” she implied. “Mrs Ayres around? I’m collecting for the Kirk roof. It’s been struck fourteen times by lightning, and once by blue ice…” she over-shoulder-peer-begged.
“I’m an atheist, thanks,” Ayres refuse-smirked. “Anyway, by the sounds of it, your god must think you’re doing something wrong.” he trap-fell.
“How unfortunate, I have you down for ten pounds. If there is no God as you say, then you must be as wrong as if there is a God.“ She paradoxed, shut-snapping the trap.
“A tenner? Givvus a half and half and I’ll make it twenty.”
I hot wet sweat woke.
“It was a dream” I mantra’d, all the 36 miles to Dundee.
I have not worked this day.
No change there then.
Thursday, April 20, 2006
80 years! It’s been swell! Thanks a lot!
Now please go and take your useless German parasite feckless family of middle class right wing nazi spongers with you into a well deserved obscurity (quite like Anne in spite of myself, but she’ll have to retire as well).
Please put the keys to the castles, palaces, treasures etc. through the letterbox. It’s time for everyone to move on now. Cheers.
DID YOU KNOW
The royal coat of arms of the united kingdom to be used in Scotland, see above, is different from the one to be used in England. See below,
Badges? Badges? We don’t need no stinkin badges!!!!!!
What a total crock of shite. It’s 2006 everyone! WAKEY WAKEY!
Monday, April 17, 2006
Futuristic contemporary religious political thriller with sex.
War torn Iraq. Local Muslim man looks around at country occupied by foreign army, mercenary banditry, cheapness of life, religious slaughter. Disenchanted, heads out to dessert to cool his jets, take stock, chill.
As Ramadan is coming up, he decides to look for The Answer by fasting just a wee bit more than is strictly required.
Drinks only desert water for 40 days.
Half mad with starvation, has psychotic episodes, delusions, hears voices, sees visions.
Returns to Basra.
Claims enlightenment, chooses some followers desperate for a leader.
They (all male) go off and decide how Muslims should now live and how women especially should behave in all circumstances.
Publishes New Muslim Manifesto. Gathers support.
Sunnis and Shiites are anxious.
Falls in love with V nice westernised Iraqi girl. More hubbub.
Provisional government under Allied Occupation, proscribe his organisation as dangerous and seditious.
Sunnis and Shiites organise his assassination. Quite grisly, body removed and never seen again. End of story.
Reported sightings in Baghdad, etc. much mutterings.
Things die down.
Years later, non Muslim takes up the case, sees an opportunity, a big one. Says anyone can join, not just Muslims, and we’ll call it something new to avoid confusion with the other lot. (who are WRONG).
Much later, everyone ends up living to a code devised by a handful of men with some really weird ideas. You’re not allowed a view, if you speak out, you get the bullet.
Well? Whatya think? Is it a runner?
Saturday, April 15, 2006
Am I so shallow and self obsessed to believe that you are remotely interested in the length of my opus? Well, yes (I am that shallow) and
NO! (you’re not that interested)
It is time to uncloak! It is my belief, firmly held, that you are all to a man harbouring books to your collective breasts! I shall now expound on their nature and type and I don’t mean typeface.
Kim and Foot Eater and Justin, have admitted as much. Should I say confessed as much?
Fatmammycat’s first book, I see as a long page turner (400 + pages) with sexy bodice ripping bits, set in rural Ireland and New York (both tremendous selling points). It makes Edna O’Brien look like Pat O’Brien.
Everyone they say, has a book in him. The Vaporiser has a six volume adventure memoir, a film (George Clooney), and TV mini series. I defy him to disagree.
The SafeTinspector IS the new Philip K Dick, the evolution of mankind into a machine form, the philosophical ramifications thereof….It’s bursting to get out of him.
Sarah’s first I see as a volume of photographic prints with enigmatic footnotes, where the actual materials of construction are selected by the author herself to enhance the overall experience. Tell me I’m a liar.
Mr Gorilla Bananas I see as a children’s author read by everyone. More Pullman than Rowling, he will use the ‘children’s author’ tag, to maximise his ability to get his ideas across to a universal readership.
Miss Redhead’s first book is a work of non fiction I think. I see it as a sort of post punk Mrs Beaton’s, a new age manual of modern housekeeping with sex or something. She will tell us.
The literary ladies. Lindy, Sam, Andraste, are tortured by their irresistible force meeting their immovable objects, but they will overcome. Soon.
SexyBeauty, I’m still thinking about. Writing/painting?
Brewski, Binty, Twenty Major, Doctor Evil, Doctor McCrumble, it’s coming out their pores.
Short term NLP target: get up to page 300.
Medium term NLP target: email rewritten manuscript to Macmillan. 250 pp. max.
Longer term NLP target: apartment Central Park East. Talk shows. Kudos.
Have I missed anyone?
Friday, April 14, 2006
I’m off till Tuesday. Hooray! Mrs maroon doesn’t get Good Friday.
She works in the public service. Fool!
She thinks I am clearing out the shed. We know better though, don’t we?
I only get today because the English get it. Presbyterian Scotland is a bit suspicious of all that idolatry, so the country grinds on.
The motorways are clogged with English heading north God bless ‘em. Six hours in the company Mondeo, kids sick in the back, granny forgot her pills and why bring that stupid boat all this way for 2 hours fishing on a loch so cold that 34 seconds is the survival record?
This weekend we get our own back for England winning the world cup etc. etc.
“Now let’s see, a lager, a white wine, a sherry (for granny), two pepsi maxes, anything else? Right that’ll be £23.87 thanks. No I‘m sorry, bar meals stopped at 13:30 PROMPT. (mutters) Bloody English. Food in a pub after 13:30! Never heard such fal de rals, truly I haven’t. Bloomin’ Ritz is what he wants.”
Good News Everyone!!!!!!
It’s all coming together!
Book Update: 73 pages! Wery pwoud yes, wery pwoud.
Macmillan the publishers have an imprint for new writers!! The bloke was on the radio. They’ve had 4000 finished manuscripts to date, which is a lot but they’ve read them all. You only have to email the finished work to them!
Here’s the links.
BBC Radio 4’s Open Book. A program about, well you work it out. Go halfway down the page for the Macmillan bit.
Macmillan the publishers
The man said they get a lot of science fiction but look at everything! I see they’re going to publish an SF book later this year, so they’re obviously not fussy! The NLP said it would all work out and here I am nearly a third through already!
Note: My wonderful book is NOT science fiction. I use the example for illustrative purposes only.
I have to see a man about a dog now, but will return later for some proper blogging which will have nothing to do with my writing career which is really taking off.
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
There is nothing
more depressing than looking at your own page every day to see that it has not changed. The little Brownies have not sorted it out through the night. Lazy, shiftless elfin fuckers.
Update: Cue the “Murder She Wrote” theme tune…Have now done 54 pages (60 behind schedule) and even though I says it myself, it is 54 pages of the crappiest shit what I’ve ever read so it is.
Am I bovvered? Do I look bovvered? Yeahbut do I look bovvered?
Book writing. What a lot of old fucking wank. I’ve got a life to live. Before it’s too late.
The pin the shell the door the wind…
I googled that, Mr Smartypants Baker, only to remember the comments thing. You’ll cut yourself one day, I swear to God you will.
I found the missing episode. I was sure I posted it last Monday. I should have left it alone but I messed about with it, pissed all over it I have.
Confession: I’ve thought up another, better story featuring you all. I can’t help it!
I can’t, I tells ‘ee!
The girls are right! I can’t FINISH! Can’t close the deal.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
The Ladies are right! And it’s no more than I deserve.
Sexy Beauty and Fatmammycat’s comments are frighteningly accurate.
It’s ME that’s the Doubting Thomas!
I was trying the diversionary tactic of transference.
Garrison Keiller warns against trying to be too smart, saying that it always backfires and leads to misunderstanding, and that it’s easy to be caught out, especially by two clever women who will double bluff you and pull your chain a bit.
I've been away looking for that other bit (the bit with Gorilla Bananas bedroom in it). Found some of it. It’s a mystery.
After the highs earlier in the week,it was inevitable. Into every life a little rain must fall. I didn’t win blog of the week, but I beat the monkey.
Project bulletin in brief.
Been back to the library. Following SexyBeauty’s (and FMC and all the other Doubting Thomases) many injunctions to grow a thick skin, don’t be disappointed, take a creative writing class etc. etc. etc., (they trying to tell me something or what?) I have re-read Stephen King’s most excellent advice ‘On Writing’.
I think that’s enough formal training.
HE says that I should rattle on with the first draft and then leave it alone for SIX WEEKS,
THEN do the rewrites!
On a three-month project timetable (I’ve done the CPA [critical path analysis]), and starting April the first (coincidence only) to be finished July the first, means that the first draft must be finished by May 10th at the latest.
King reckons not to worry too much about plot, or back story, character stuff and so on, or themes, nearly forgot theme, as that will reveal itself as we go. It’s only when I’m started on my next book six weeks in, that I go back to the first and sort it out. 10 pages a day he reckons, with no excuses, seven days a week, no exceptions. That’s 340 pages! Phew! Don’t worry though, I’ll whittle it down on the re-write (s). He reckons we writers must ruthlessly avoid adverbs religiously, and “kill our darlings”, which means taking out all the good bits that we’re proud of.
He says not to write any boring bits at all, because people don’t have the time or patience to read boring bits any more. This is a bonus since working to such a tight schedule, I was worried about the boring bits. If you remember, they were the bits marked in pink highlighter. This way, I will save time.
Got some comments to write now, and I just noticed there that the Gothic part with Gorilla Banana’s room in it hasn’t been posted. I thought I posted that on Monday! I’ll have to see what happened there, and report back.
Below is a picture of "writers" on a course. Are they writing? Are they fuck.
This, is a picture of a proper writer.
Sunday, April 02, 2006
Years ago as a wide eyed graduate out to change the world and all that, I came back into the office to be told that there was a phone message for me.
Carol (for she it was) said, “oh there was a man on the phone looking for you, I’ve left the number on your desk”
“Oh aye?” I replied, for I was awaiting a call from some geezer, regards tungsten tipped cutters or some other meaningless shite, “what’s his name?”
Carol (for it was she) looked at her pad, “Mr Lyon”
Oh yeah that was him, Marconi-Invicta or something, I remember. I thought as I dialled. Spoke to him on Wednesday, should have phoned back by now. Old git!
“Can I speak to Mr Lyon?…
“No you can’t. This is Edinburgh Zoo and someone’s playing an April Fool on you.”
The funny part was the polite but slightly pissed off voice of the girl at the zoo. I must have been number 50 that day. Oh, the innocent pleasures we had back then. If it was hot, I would send the other girl (Linda) out for Mivvies and then sit about flirting while we licked them. In Scotland when it’s even just warm, people strip off. Linda used to eat a banana in such a way as would be illegal in some countries. Don’t know why I remember that. Yes I do.
UPDATES ( for clarification)