That pure Cane Spirit since 1848.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The smell hit him when he opened the hut door. He couldn’t place it. Perhaps it was the smell of gentle disappointment.
No, it’s margarine he decided. Margarine and vinyl table covers.
“Oh Maroon,” he sighed piteously.
Life on the lam was going to be difficult.
He stepped in and dropped his suitcase on the bed…

If "Uncle" Otto Ziegler hadn’t had his stroke and fallen in the pool and if his puzzled audience hadn’t assumed it the highlight of his act then Maroon would never have come. The classified in last week’s Stage had been a godsend;

“Hands on” compere and two
coats required for prestige Devon
sunshine resort. Exp. of mediaeval
knight / serving wench not essential.
Live in all found. Immediate start.

To Maroon, a rat on a sinking ship, every word sang out to him with the tantalising “hands on” and “serving wench” providing the descant.
He memorised the number and while he was out shopping in Sainsburys, he called the agent, one Richard (Double) Dekker. They met later that day.

The interview went well. A formality. Maroon had warmed to the theatrical agent instantly which is always a great comfort to the practiced liar. There only remained the crossing of the "i"s as Dekker put it.

“Let’s see…Can we run through the health questionnaire?”
“Of course.”
“No thanks.”
“Uhuh. Do you smoke?”
“Good Lord no.”
“Any skin disease, dizzy spells, headaches or heart trouble?”
“Thanks. No deafness.”
“That’s very kind of you…”
“Yes, good. Um, alcohol, how many units; in a week say?”
“Some weeks would be less.”

The formalities came to a shuddering halt. Dekker was unable to stop himself looking up. He saw at once the narrow necktie streaked with cigarette ash and the swollen brisket and the purple veins around a nose sharp as a pin. He relaxed and smiled.
Maroon on the other hand, felt the scrutiny keenly and cursed the sun which chose now to shine on his ravaged face and checkered jacket. He cleared his throat running a finger around his damp collar, and asked innocently:

“Well, how much is an alcohol unit these days?”
“I’ll put down 50 shall I?”
“There are seven days in a week Maroon. It’s purely for insurance purposes. Besides, all the best comperes are piss ar…look it’s expected, it’s the biz. Take poor Lennie Bennett: smoked like a fish and thirsty as an Arab Mullah…”
“But he died!”
“Never on stage Maroon, never died with his public, no, they loved him and that’s the point. I’ll fill in the rest, you get yourself down to Devon."
And that was that. They shook hands.

“Give Devon my love and tell them I’ll send the two coats stroke serving wenches as soon as.
Break a leg Maroon.”

Monday, April 13, 2009

Achilles Hector Kenneth Maroon.

An Apology:

I apologise unreservedly for the slur neither intended nor implied on the wives of Mr Cameron and Mr Brown the Prime Minister occasioned by my bare-arsed exhibitionism on the weblog named Cape to Rio. I was not overworked or under great stress.

Further, I deeply regret my inconvenience on this most beautiful of Easter Mondays to be stuck inside explaining myself. I am most sorry to be typing this out to an empty screen knowing deep in my heart that public houses across this great land have been open for two hours now, serving cool wines and sandwiches. That, perhaps, is my deepest regret and for that I am more sorry than I can say.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Thursday, April 09, 2009

I had no idea that the back of my head was so ugly.
I shall ask for a taper cut from now on

Some of you, perhaps the sporting physiologists among you (and I know how many there are of you these days) will be wondering, which, is the disabled leg. Take a good look my friends.

Have any of you noticed how both legs get thicker towards the bottom? I mean towards the ground.
Instead of thinning out they thicken up?
Simple explanation; Cycling.
That's right my friend, cycling... and nothing to worry about whatsoever.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

On Sunday we like to cut sandwiches for our return from the Boston Arms at 3:30. We like old fashioned sandwiches best; smoked salmon, egg and cress, roast beef. We like to arrange them in three piles on paper doilies on the big oblong sandwich plate and cover them with a square of muslin.
We like to walk along the river in the afternoon to work up our appetites. When we come in, we get the wine from the fridge and the sandwiches from the pantry and settle to watch deal or no deal. We have a woollen travel rug that we spread over us even if it’s warm because it’s nice and special to do so. We usually bring a surprise home like a small box of chocs or Turkish delight. We like to have a snog during the wine and sandwiches. We like to laugh when someone who is poor ends up with nothing on deal or no deal. We like it when the other contestants start to cry because they look silly. We find it sexy and we like to start petting while Noel Edmunds commiserates with them. We like to have oral when the banker reduces his offer and the poor person tries to smile. Then we like to have more wine and a nap before Gordon Ramsay.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

In 1964 I went to state catholic primary school. What a punch in the guts.
You see, I had spent the preceding year, my gap year, at nursery, expressing myself as a tree or a stickleback or a tadpole or a cotton wool cloud in a blue sky. I had busied my emotional development through the medium of finger paints and Bauhaus wooden toys. The last of the innocent naps always followed lunch and then home in time for Stingray or Fireball XL5.

State catholic primary school in 1964 was a workhouse from 1924. My best friends smelled of damp and stale bread. They had holes in their jumpers. I caught nits. They had bruises and black eyes and purple dye painted on them. They were the poorest, fucked around kids you can imagine.

Shut up Maroon, you are becoming tiresome. You’re nearly fifty, so fucking what? Live, you stupid bastard. That famous picture of the Japanese kids at nursery having their nap in Hiroshima is identical to us having ours. Complete blissful innocence. But then our dads weren’t out raping Nanking were they?

I was extracted in 1965 and sent to protestant primary school. It had activity rooms and French language puppets. It had miniaturised sanitary porcelain in the lavatories. Not to mention a roof over the urinals. It was nice to pee without getting rained on in a place which smelled of carbolic soap and not old man’s piss.

Friday, April 03, 2009

See? There it is again. It’ll put the customers off. The whelks are arranging themselves into disparaging personal attacks. I'm sure of it. The Tortoiseshells are the worst. Troublemakers to a man. The Blue Rounds are little angels by comparison, though I did turn around suddenly to see their tiny feelers out at each other behind my back. Bit rude. The worst are the adolescents,
It’s always out the corner of my eye. By the time I check positively they subtly change their position to a random array. A bit too random I think, but that’s the curse of mathematics. I took some of them down to the river today. A treat. You know, let them stretch their foot. I’m not sure they all came back.


Buggers, did you see that? Yes the adolescents. Clever you see and greased bloody lightning. What a handful. The customers are a rum lot too. I'm fussy you see and I’m not sure people realise the responsibility they are taking on with whelks. I had one ask me for a pin. A pin. He wanted to "winkle" them out their shells. What an utter bastard. I could have struck him. Another asked where the salt and vinegar was. He was an utter as well. I had no idea such cruelty existed. Christ did you see where the tortoiseshells went? Mind where you’re standing will you? There they are - look, halfway down the street. What did I tell you? Greased bloody lightning.