Tuesday, May 23, 2006

I’m Pissed Off


That’s right I’m pissed off again. What is it this time? Well, it was one of those days where I thought nothing could go wrong. My day of work was done and I had literary plans for the rest of the afternoon as well as the promise of a nice cup of tea. To fill the hour in between I chatted to Claire (by mistake, but it was still an enjoyable chat). Anne, Jane and I discussed the meaning of my dreams and other topics of gross importance. Then I tootled off to have another chat with Claire but ended up caught in the conversation about how a trip to Wales had changed the life of the teenager who was divulging all (I don’t think she cared, she’s leaving Paris tomorrow) and left me having to explain why you should never trust men with blue eyes – it popped out before I could stop myself – swiftly followed by my age when I announced that forty-five year old George Clooney was not too old for me. But not even that could dampen my mood. I even found it hysterical when I ambled back to rendezvous with Jim to find the two biggest gossips in the whole place reunited as I glibly said: “Right Jim I’ll go and get my stuff then.” Peter’s eyes widened and when I asked him what was the matter the invisible cat appeared to have got his tongue.

So off we tootled in a very circuitous manner to the tea room. It was a bit nippy and all, but you know I would rather walk out of my way and be sure of walking past a Tabac then get to the tea room and not have walked past a Tabac and not be able to concentrate. Even when we got to the tea room and it seemed to have upgraded to a restaurant that wasn’t open till seven, we just shrugged our shoulders and said: “C’est la vie,” and pootled round the corner to a café and had coffee instead. You see Jim wants to write a book as well. Yeah. The important bit there is ‘wants’. As much as Anne is my mentor, I can’t have these types of chats with her because Anne’s book is on my bookshelf; Anne’s published short story is on my bedside table. Anne is to be respected and revered. And Anne and I are not equal, but that is why she is my mentor and Jim is the pal I can chat about absolutely anything to and we both understand cos we’re still down there trying to jump up onto the stool and reach the keys of the laptop. Anyway we chatted and then we upgraded from coffee to Sangria and from Alma Marceau to the Champs Elysee. And then the other high point of the evening was when I was comfortable enough to say: “Had a fantastic afternoon, but I want to go home and write now.”

But hey not too soon, because after sharing something with me, I had to share something with Jim. So we tootled down to Avenue Matignon, shoulders hunched up against the rain bearing wind and there were the improbable cows. “Oh yeah, the cows. Did you know that this is the only country in the world where they’ve had to open up a cow hospital?” The words were slightly blown around and didn’t quite make a connection with my brain until I showed Jim my second favourite cow; ‘Artisticow’. I hadn’t quite seen that she had been painted up to look like a cow art folder last week in the dusk when I first met her, but now as the art folder beneath her feet was ripped to shreds I made the connection. As we dodged traffic to get to ‘Mademoiselle 100,000 volts’ I noticed that someone had been messing with her voltage, but not only that, they had swiped the tip of her horns. And my favourite - but by now I was too distressed to notice her name - someone had swiped a swathe of skin off her flank. I couldn’t quite get a sentence out I was so flustered and blustered and angry. But when I settled down in my metro seat I thought up a just punishment for such desecrators of art: two years solitary confinement in a darkened room deprived of all forms of stimulation.

3 comments:

skint writer said...

nice read, I enjoyed tootling and pootling around it . .

Minx said...

Cows in Paris, lions in Lyon, you're all nuts!
And cow hospitals, is that a frenchy way of saying 'vets'?

Verilion said...

No honest, the cow hospital is to repair the trashed cows. The Frenchy way to say Vet is 'Veterinaire'. I love words like that no need to go searching in foreign language memory, it's already there.

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