A friend wants to move to London.
‘Do you like talking about property?’
‘Well – it’s OK, I guess.’
‘No, but I mean – do you like it?’
‘Do you love it though?’
‘I guess –‘
‘Do you love it above all things? Do you dream of it? Do you burn for it? Do you want to wake up in the night crying property, property, property? Do you want it to haunt your every waking move? Well?’
‘You’re scaring me man…’
‘Do you? Do you? Do you?’
‘Leave me alone!’
‘Come back here! You come back!’
After the reading us writers were talking. The successful one spoke.
‘So I’ve been watching all the classics of the genre. Texas Chainsaw, Night of the…’
‘Haven’t seen it. It’s the one where they sew people’s faces to each other’s bums, right? Sounds awful. What about you?’
They turned to me.
‘What about me?’
‘Well…’ I thought. ‘I guess my favourite horror film is a movie called Suspiria…’
‘Oh, is it? God, really?’
The successful writer literally arched an eyebrow.
‘Yeah – it is. It’s got my favourite scene in any horror film in it, where the heroine is fleeing an assailant and jumps through a window into a room of barbed wire. Heh.’
‘So,’ another writer said, ‘I’m really excited about the new Star Wars film…’
On the way home I tried to think why the successful writer had reacted like that to my favourite horror film. But I couldn’t, except for imagining that the writer had some idea that a writer had to be catty, had to belittle, to denigrate. But I was too old to be anything other than loving, and knew the only way to approach life was with a big smile and my arms wide open, ready to take it all on. My door had always to be open; I had less time.
Yeah, she was at the gig.
The one I went on a date with.
Who ghosted you afterwards.
Who ghosted me afterwards, right.
And I think that’s what got into me. You know, I was just determined to be really funny, because she was watching. So I just really launched myself into it, you know; I think I might have overdone it a bit actually, I was a bit frenetic.
Anyway, she just won a competition. Well – she came second actually. So now I’m going to have to win a competition.
Because she did?
But you can’t dedicate your whole career to keeping up with her. I mean, just because she turned you down once.
… I mean, just because she ghosted you.
I mean it’s not as if you want marriage and children is it.
No, I don’t. Not really.
Then what are you making a fuss about? If you don’t want marriage and children, you’re just messing around.
Yeah. You are right.
I know I’m right.
But she’s really pretty –
So, when are you next performing?