Thank you for deciding to slide your attention across this string of little symbols. I am going to be making some chains of them, swirling them about my head, and then hurling them with all my narrative might and accompanied perhaps by a gruff, unselfconscious syllable (I’m thinking “Haw!”), over stuff I do, people I meet, engagements I attend etc., which, if we wanted to stretch this cowboy metaphor into allegory, we might call cows.
And bear in mind that I am just about to tour the United States of America with the tenacious if fatigable MON, and as such your can bet your bottom dollar that I am going to lasso me some pretty juicy cow.
It’s just a shame I’m a such a wilfully opaque raconteur. Rather like a cowboy who brings you cows pickled in formaldehhyde.
I am a euphemist, yes, I admit that, but I want you to know that I do intend to focus on the cows. Me and Mon will round them up, keep them safe on the long prairie nights, lulling them with our bawdy songs, then march them to the abatoir (my keyboard) two by two, to have them made into burgers for your enjoyment.
Lets have one now. This one takes place in LONDON town, rather than in America, for the understandable reason that I am in London, rather than in America.
My friend is in a jazz group. They play old standards and he croons admirably. He put me on the guest list of a gig they were doing in a cocktail bar. It turned out to be far swankier than any other place I have ever been too INCLUDING Pizza Express.
I had accidentaly dressed as a farmer. This fact wildly increased my enjoyment of the environment.
The other guest-list slots were taken up by the sax/clarinet players wife, who is Chinese, and some friends of hers, two of whom were also Chinese women. They were all strikingly beautiful.
We drank these amazing cocktails. The one I got costed about the same as your average round. But it turned out to be far more potent than buying yourself a whole average round. When it arrived it was sort of on fire. I was instructed to only drink the part of it that sat in a chocolate pod, because the rest was poisonous. I didn’t like the cocktail in a conventional sense but it was impossible not to respect it. It had many flavours, all of them dark and brooding (Laphroaig and absynth to name two of the better known). It was like drinking a sinister board-room.
I went outside for a cigarette but my mind was down in the bar with my smoking drink. I was already half drunk and I had only taken a few sips.
The Chinese crew came out shining. I spoke to each in turn and had the following discussions:
1. Freedom in the ‘west’ and in China, and the differences between the British and Chinese authorities responses to protest, and interior design.
2. How should theology relate to the concerns of everyday life? Is the heart deceitful?
3. The Chinese poet Gu Cheng and his iconic poem that defined that tremulous generation of young Chinese who are forever remembered (at least by westerners) facing the tanks in Tianimen Sq.
“Even with these dark eyes, a gift of the dark night, I go seek the shining light.” Gu Cheng.
The band were superb and by the end of the second set we had got three quarters of the way through our cocktails and were seeing double and dancing triple.
So it was a great night and these three ladies were probably the best people I’ve ever met.
OK, I’m going to trapse around in the rain now, waiting to go to the promised land.
I’ve decided that Me and MON are the second wave of manifest destiny.