I have somehow become embroiled in a writer’s group, it’s a simple concept that leads to unexpected places.  Each week he three of us write a short story using the same title. So far Tin mugs have become metaphors for the protective head wear of WWI soldiers,Barry George has roller skated over 1000 cups of tea and unrequited love has had a healthy dose of cynicism.  Don’t try this at home!  It is much better suited to the office, especially if your boss is one of the other writers and happily turns a blind eye to the relevance of fiction in the workplace.  Happier, healthier, more productive.  So here’s Suzy’s latest contribution, I told her she needs to stop plagiarising obsessions from Dolores Luxedo but he does pick addictive ones.  Maybe she’ll get him hooked on crack in return (not saying you’re a crack whore Suzy, not yet anyway).

  This Week is Tomorrow Morning
by Suzy Fauxpas

Looking back on his career he realised he had achieved more than he could ever have dreamed of.  Politics wasn’t about riches but he had plenty now; 9 houses, over £60 million in the bank and a respect in high circles that his Tory predecessors had never come close to.   Maybe he wasn’t loved by everyone, the ignorant among the proletariat had seen to that in their “anti-war” campaigns, but the world was definitely a safer place thanks to him.  No Chilcot inquiry or bunch of placard-totting anarchists was going to change that. There were still plenty of people that would invite him to give an after dinner speech, the prices he commanded were testimony to how highly regarded he was. Since leaving office he had been senior adviser to JP Morgan, Zurich Financial Services and the Emir of Kuwait (among others) and had earned millions on behalf of British Gas in his deal with Israel.  Yet there were still those who wanted to dredge up the past when all he did , all he had ever done, was work for the common good!  And anyway, he didn’t care what they said about him, his actions were rubber stamped by God himself, why else would Yale University have asked him to lecturer on Faith?  Let them eat cake!  He dined with Archbishops, with world leaders, with the great and the good.   Tony sighed. He should be happy.  God was obviously happy with him, yet something,……something was missing.

In the good old days when he first became MP for Sedgefield Tony had felt passionate, inspired by all the changes he could make to clear up the rubble of the Tory years.  Inspired by John Smith and the potential for a cleaner, brighter future for his party, his country and his voters.  It wasn’t just abut workers rights any more, it was going to be big, something different, a break from the norm.

When he first met Gordon it was like finding that missing half of your soul.  Both were impassioned speakers, without doubt the best speakers on the opposition bench, because they cared.  Together they would ride on the the crimson tide of new ideas, new voters and new policies.  Newness, maybe that was what was missing?  Pushing 60 he wondered what was left for him.  Sure, he had a loving family and a devoted wife, and Cherie still knew how to make him feel young…….but that nagging sense that he didn’t have everything still doggedly followed him. Like a misformulated manifesto that looks word-perfect on the surface but inside it’s all empty promises, the veneer of shoddy politics, conservatism.  Tony chuckled and realised that that was something he hadn’t done in a long time.

Nursing a whisky in his favourite Romero Bosch crystal glass (better not tell Father Thomas about this habit he thought), Tony stoked the fire and slumped into his Damien Joust leather chair.  The embers glowed like a sea of shinning red rosettes on polling night.  “God, 1997 was a good year!” he proclaimed, thinking about the vibrancy, the sense of euphoria that had surrounded him then.  He remembered that night well, with a picture-perfect clarity.  It was etched on his brain as if the very essence of life itself.   And he remember those softly whispered words in his ear, shortly before the results came in: “It’s all politics, politics, politics, but I need nurturing Tony.”

A quick fumble in the broom closet, but so passionate it aroused something in him that Cherie had not accomplished in those first heady days of marriage when he didn’t believe it could get any better, well not physically anyway.  Kicking buckets and mops aside with reckless abandon, briefly worrying about spilled bleach on his Rodrigo Kampf suit (how would that look to the jubilant voters?) – it had all been so real, so earthy, so very proletarian.  Their hands relentlessly canvassed each others bodies with a tenacious persuasion he only wished some of the junior party members would demonstrate when going door-to-door.

Later, nearing midnight, he stood on stage in front of the optimistic faces of the new generation and relished the palpable excitement in the air.  He could feel the warmth, the tangible heat from his partner next to him while they watched the country become steadily coated in red like a long-awaited rose that, after months of careful nursing finally unfurls in arresting beauty; petal by glorious petal.  With each constituency result his hearth thumped a little louder, he felt his mind stiffening, becoming erect to the point of explosion.  It was a sensation he had never felt before, better even than the birth of his first son, it was an orgasm of pride coupled with a burning hunger for more, more, more. That’s when he finally realised that they weren’t just going to win, it was going to be a landslide!

A week  is a long time in politics and Tony pondered the week they’d had, a roller coaster of hope and emotion and that little itch of fear. And it had all lead up to this moment, to this night, to now. Looking to his left he met his lover’s eyes and whispered; “This week is tomorrow morning Gordon, we’ve done it, our time has finally come!”  Gordon gave that steely smile that Tony had come to know and love and said simply “Aye Tony, aye.”

The end of an era - John Smith's Funeral

GB”Och, John Smith was a fine man and a great leader.”
TB “If I look sad they won’t suspect I’m already planning my takeover of the party.”

Devil’s Blood

October 2, 2011

So Suzy Bloomfield and I have agreed to put on a show that will be coming to a pub/club/theatre/park/bus/street corner, possibly near you, at some point in the future.  As part of my research into the general theme I thought who better to speak to than Penny Whistleblower.  And the old girl came through for me, taking time out from her coverage of the tri-party conferences that have been engulfing British media of late (which is really a smoke screen for her to indulge that obsession with John Prescott).  Like a true tabloid floozy Penny dug up some dirt on none other than Tomato Ketchup, as a little appetizer for the new show, Condiminium, coming soon. 

The Sinister side of Sauce – Unmasking the Devil’s Blood.
by Penny Whistleblower

When sitting on a beach relaxing with some good old fish n chips or having a burger at a summer barbecue think again before you reach for the ketchup.  That innocent sauce you smear lovingly on food is, like nature, red in tooth and claw.  In the 18th century it was known as “Devil’s blood” until the then Pope took a liking to it and decreed a name change.  Originally used in satanic ceremonies to represent the blood of Beelzebub, Ketchup has a dark past, and according to some, a darker future.   In recorded history at least 1029 people have lost their lives thanks to the red stuff, more than have ever died at the hands of its bedfellows – mayonnaise, tartare and brown sauce.  The first monk to die from ketchup was in 1358, when the witches he was denouncing smothered him in a vat of devil’s blood.

It isn’t only religious followers that have suffered at this popular sauce’s hands.  At least 36 people were killed slipping on devil’s blood, one falling out of a 9-storey window and being impaled by a car aerial as a consequence.  Little Jack, a 4-year-old from Minnesota, died when he swallowed 12 ketchup sachets.  The sharp edges caused intestinal blockage making him explode in a geyser of  blood and tomato ketchup. Since then companies have employed small children to trim the edges of condiment sachets into low-impact curved forms, using nail scissors. Despite the controversy, and yes, the death of many employees in skirmishes with foreign workers who are accused of “taking our jobs”, this practice has been allowed to continue due to children having the only hands small enough to trim the little serrated edges efficiently.  Moves are currently under way to open employment up to dwarves, little people, midgets and those suffering from “withered hand” and “alice-in-wonderland” syndrome.

So, what does the future hold for tomato sauce?  With sales rising despite global economic collapse, many fear that devil’s blood is replacing traditional meals as a cheap filler.  Often touted as “one of your five-a-day”, schools in Worcester recently started serving bowls of ketchup instead of custard.  This trend is unlikely to continue in educational establishments however, due to a run on hyperactivity in the school that has been linked to the high number of e-numbers that put the red in dread.  In March this year the teachers of Saint Hellion’s Primary School were found maimed and dismembered after pupils went on a ketchup fuelled rampage armed with play dough, building blocks, plastic spades and the contents of the caretaker’s sadly unlocked cupboard. Tragic, yes.  To be repeated?  Maybe.

It’s not only children and teachers who have been the victims of ketchup though, 2 politicians died and 1 model was blinded when devils blood was used as a protest tool against bad policy and bad use of the skin of 6000 mink respectively.  With civil unrest on the increase, quangos and right-wing fish tanks are concerned that more “ketchup protests” are likely.  Recently a Facebook campaign was foiled by PIG – the Police Investigative Group, that monitors social networking sites for potentially violent mass protests.  Sergeant Hamfist of PIG said ” we noticed the word ketchup had been used 43281 times on one group page, a sure sign of potential violence.  Turns out that they were planning to cover, I mean literally cover, the houses of parliament in devil’s blood.  They’d stolen over five million ketchup sachets from Wetherspoons across the country and planned to use reconditioned fire engines, catapults, blowpipes and garden hoses to attack the building. It would have been a disaster, I mean can you imagine the clean-up?  And at least 3 cabinet politicians are allergic to ketchup that we know of.  God!  The last thing we need is more swollen politicians!”

Thanks to PIG the disaster was averted, but will we be so lucky next time?  Amid fears that Iran and North Korea are in alliance to build 100 new ketchup factories the UN is moving to place sanctions on tomatoes, vinegar and high-fructose corn syrup. Are sanctions enough to stop the bloodshed?  Will ketchup become the biggest killer of the 21st century or retain its place as leader of the condiments, no more harmful than salad cream or mustard gas?  Lets just hope that, as the dirty bombs of devil’s blood rain down upon us we aren’t left wondering why we didn’t ketchup when we had the chance.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/sep/02/giant-balloon-and-hosepipe-geoengineering

I cored the world today
and played intergalactic catch with a giant ball of solid metal
broke the neighbour’s window
but no one has been home for a long time
there’s not a sign of wateranywhere,
except the drainpipes,
though maybe they were used for something else,
sandbaths perhaps?
Conjecture conjecture,
back to the game…
NO, my ball has been confiscated by the headmistress
(we call her Shelly Johnson)
and it’s already being missed,
all the little living things are drying up on earth,
the apple I left as a replacement has been crushed under 50million pounds per square inch of pressure, or thereabouts.
Damnit I only wanted to play for a bit,
just a little bit longer but now the shop is closed
I’ll have to wait for a big bang before I can get another one,
not all cores are solid.

Swimming in the black hole of boquete, where all of the best parts of the universe have fallen.  Explorado is a park splattered by junk art 2200 feet above sea level, the air induces laughing fits and maybe the place does not even exist – certainly no noe seems to know where all the art work came from.  Old singer sewing machines fix broken hearts there.  The nativity scene becomes something comically fiflthy, as baby jesus eyes up his fathers cock.  I fancy Freud is roaming the hills there.  The Swedish beauty came and left like a dream, singing songs of pippy longstckings and seamen catching herrings by night.  We awoke to a breakfast of beer and the morning never ended.  Serenaded with radio head by my birthday´s sake, full of curls.  Everything makes me burp – Panamanian coffee, abuelo rum, even water demands to escape in bubbles as though it were too over excited by the surpluss of fun.  My first ever manicure and by God´she had an enormous cushion of chest, I was swimming in the flesh fo 20 minutes and then looked down to find a rainbow on my nails.  Mitzeee is a hyper reality woman, but today even she cannot drink.  Scotti Mac Scott at 6am, supressed the nausea and turned it to gold.  Softer beds than even utopia can boast, Woodrow Wilson could not hope to attain such heights.  I take my coffee con leche, and con leche with a big smile and a do-se-do.  Por Favor, no me peges infirmidades venereal, ponti el condom.  Playing it safe baby, with a wifi high five. 

Tapir Mache.

February 22, 2011

Hi. This is Tapir Mache.