Disclaimer: This piece, like reality, is a work of fiction. Any similarity to persons or corporate entities living, dead or all points in between, is purely poetical.
So I was talking to this girl in a Paddington Hotel. Her name was $12,000 in a long term investment hope to put a deposit on a Darlo terrace by the end of the year.
She introduced me to her friend. This, she said, is an apartment in Woolloomooloo, with water views and a company car. She goes out with Sony executive just back from business in Beijing and New York.
He’s friends with just brought out his second top ten CD and touring the States next month but still slum it occasionally so as to keep the street cred intact, they went to school together at Daddy’s a Corporate lawyer but he smoked pot in the sixties and we’re just dabbling in rock n’ roll n’ smack till the inheritance kicks in Private College for Privileged Little Boys. They had some wild times together.
Just then the pungent perfume of her friend approached, and she introduced me as Thirty years old but still on the dole day dreaming idealist failed writer from share house in Marrickville. I tried to smile warmly but got little response from the squeaky clean just a clerk for a multinational conglomerate but I wouldn’t wipe my bum with your BA, you pseudo poetic hipster doofus, if you were the last alcohol addled artist in the universe Smithe III.
Anyway, so we ordered a round of overpriced cocktails, as you do, and they talked about how they’d hated ‘Big Brother’ but you just couldn’t tear yourself away from the screen really could you because I mean ‘Johnny’ and that’s nice but please don’t mention politics because you already bummed a Campari off us and why don’t you just go out and get a proper job so that you can buy you’re own drinks, but on the other hand maybe you’re right, & it’s as hip as Hep. C for us to patronise the arts.
So then walks in I’ve read plenty of Kerouac so I know where it’s at man but really I got a great career in I.T. now and sure, sometimes I find it hard to sleep at night because I’ve got no time or mental energy left to write, but what about when I’m old, and she’d leave me if I was an idealistic idiot like you so I’m always good to hit for a drink Goldberg.
And he was with I’m thin, blonde and bohlemic so I’m going to become the next great Australian Hollywood export if I have to frig every nit that came out of NIDA so I’m really good at pretending I’m interested in your life and beaming a smile as genuine and wide as a Nazi annexing Sudetenland Johnson.
And Benito, that’s a ‘Multicultural’ name isn’t it? You must know Nik Popular Ethnic Stereotype, I just saw his latest ethno-realist happening in Melbourne, “It’s a Wog Way to the Top.” Anyway, my uncle’s just bought a villa in Tuscany and that makes him more Italian than you really doesn’t it, because you can barely afford the bus fare out of here, hmm?
I was riveted to my seat as she explained to me how she’d once met a successful novelist at a three month dance party in an abandoned abattoir in London, and how he’d just bought a piece of dirt near Knightsbridge for six million pounds, and I said really, that’s wonderful and what’s his writing like?
And she said that he’d also bought a farm in California for ten million where they grew bread and wine and it was just like a novel by Steinbeck, or so he told her, and I said really that’s wonderful but what’s his writing like?
And she said that rumour had it that he’d been romantically linked with that transsexual model that won the Eurovision song contest, but was now very happily married to his New Yorican publicist with whom he shared a twelve million dollar Manhattan apartment, and who herself was rumoured to have once had an affair with Michael J. Fux All The Finest Models in Malibu, and isn’t it awful I saw him in Who Give’s A Shit Weekly battering a photographer to death with his son, just like that Sean Pun, I mean he sure can act but who cares now that MacDonna’s dumped him, and I read that Special Sauces closes to her say that their marriage was about as sincere as McHappy Day anyway. Which brings me back to those 11 Secret Herbs & Spice Girls…
And I said yes but are his books any good? And she said that she didn’t know, that she didn’t have time for tomes like that, but that she’d seen an ad for his latest novel in No Idea magazine. It was the third book in a series about a former Navy Seal who had become a well-meaning Southern Lawyer that hunted down strangely literate Serial Killers, and that it had had glowing reviews from Jeffrey Archer.
And they all agreed silently that maybe I wouldn’t be such a drain on the GST if I just wrote books like that? And then my mother walked in and said that they bought stories in The Australian Womens’ Monthly, and why couldn’t I write nice things like that? Some thin watery romance that you can flick through at the gynaecologists and no-one need be ashamed of.
I was about to ask my mother what the fuck she was doing there anyway, but before I had a chance Jamie Packer walked in with a quivering grin and a pair of silicon breasts under each arm, and immediately collapsed in tears and said someone had left his ego out in the rain, and the orange icing was flowing down and growing hard around the Lilliputian sized lights of the latest in mobile phone technology, and that he didn’t think he could make it cause it took so long to fake it and he’d never have that recipe again.
And everybody in the bar placed their arms around him and began to comfort and softly fondle him while I seized the opportunity to quietly rifle through their wallets and packs of cigarettes, before screaming triumphantly, Calm down Packer you poor little entrepreneurial prick, the next shouts on me rich kid!
But it didn’t work, and little Jamie just sobbed and wailed, I’m frightened, and I want my money. I’m scared and I want my money to tuck me into bed at night. I want my money, because I’m scared of things that go bump in my life. I want my money and I don’t care what it costs, I want my money and I don’t care what I might have already lost. I want my money, because I’m dark, and it’s frightened.
Anyway, by now I was so disgusted with the whole affair that I sculled somebody’s beer and just walked right out of there.
Benito Di Fonzo. 2oo1.