Friday, 13 June 2008

Blood in the souffle

When you come back to a place where you used to live there are three groups of people who you are in contact with.

Firstly, there are people who you want to see more of. Then there are people who you're just glad to see and finally there are people who you don't really want to hook-up with but feel duty-bound to do so.

I am supposed to be having lunch with Melissa. I'll let you guess which category Melissa fits into...

Dear Melissa,

My dearest, dear, beautiful and lovely Melissa. You are so boring.

You once lived next door to my flat while we were at University. We have nothing in common.

A few weeks ago you e-mailed me and asked about my 30th. How could I not say I was coming to Cape Town?

Today we are supposed to be having lunch. I tried to make it today because I knew you'd be working and so we'd have to keep it short.

Melissa, I'm having trouble typing this. It hurts me as much as it hurts you.

My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains
My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk,
Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains*

Melissa, I will donate R10 to a charity for abused animals every time you do any one of the following...

1/ Make a disparaging remark about why I choose to live in London
2/ Make a disparaging remark about black people
3/ Tell me how much you enjoy watching Prison Break and then try to convince me to do the same.

I will add an extra R10 to my third point if you try to entice me by explaining the plot. Melissa, it is me who is being held against my will, more than you will ever realise.

I have been half in love with easeful Death
Called him soft names in many a mused rhyme

I am going to pack a little bag of HB pencils, all nicely sharpened and during our meal I will quietly snap them under the table.

And as you dominate the conversation you will not see the drops of blood from my hands, staining the starched white serviette, splinters of the pencil gashing and tearing into my skin.

Once the pencils are all broken in two I will find the sharpest edge from one of them and gouge lines down my thighs as you drone on about bloody black people, bloody South Africa, bloody crime, bloody this, bloody that.

Melissa, it will be me who is bloodied. Bruised. Broken.

Now more than ever seems it rich to die
To cease upon the midnight with no pain

The bill will arrive and you will find something to quibble about but the light will have broken. Once we have finished I will get up and the spatters of blood and flesh, smeared against the tablecloth, will vanish.

"Bobby, it's always so much fun. You should come around tomorrow night or something."

"Yes, Melissa, thank you, I will call you, perhaps."
Hopefully you won't answer and I will leave a message. But you just won't get it.

* = From John Keats, Ode to a Nightingale, May 1819.

10 comments:

Timmy said...

Sounds like you will be broke and bloody by the time lunch is finished.

Bobby Cox said...

Timmy, I am now finished. There are injuries but I have applied Vitamin D oil so it's unlikely to scar.
Hopefully.

fleetmonkey said...

Where else can you get drama and first aid tips outside Casualty

Anonymous said...

You need to learn to just day that you are too busy and maybe next time etc etc. Works a treat for me. x

dickophile said...

haha. i couldn't stop laughing. so are you going to treat yourself to something special for making it through your lunch?

ANDRE said...

I actually like Melissa, mainly because of point 3).

We can exchange friends, if you want. One day I'll introduce you to this girl called Antonia and I'm sure you'll pass from HB pencils to sticking crayons down your penis hole...

Is there a clinical name for it, by the way?

Anonymous said...

I have a friend ?? who I stay away from as she is so annoying. I have to see her and talk to her every so often. When she offers to come see me, I pipe up "NOOOO Don't do that! Gas is to expensive. I don't want you to be out any money." She loves more money than her own reflection in the mirror.

Carl

Anonymous said...

This woman is so bad that it goes something like this...

Do you want to go out?

No, I'm really under the weather?

Do you want me to bring you some chicken soup?

No, No don't do that. I've got tons of soup in a can right here.
I don't want you to spend any money on gas. It's expensive.

That's ok what money between friends.

Ok, then. I prefer to be alone then.

Well, then you sleep, and I'll watch tv then.

Well, I'm allergic to artifical lights and canceled the electricity.

That's insane. That's not true.

Yes it is! Just don't come over whatever you do! ;)

I always want to slit my wrists by the end of the evening. And eating out etnails complaint after complaint. Once, at a restaurant a waiter told her that her necklace was pretty and she replied. It should be. It was VERY expensive. He just looked at me with this look, like what is wrong with you being out with this person. I just grimmaced and squirmed in my seat over that one.

Carl

Lex said...

A spin-off of category 3 that happens to me all the time: a category 3 person visits the place where you now live, and feels compelled to tell you that they're in town and you should meet up. Next thing you know, you're sitting in Starbucks, in the middle of the most awkwardly jerky conversation ever, using every ounce of willpower in you to not throw yourself out the window.

God I hate pseudo-friends.

Fresco said...

Off topic:

Dear Bobby

Gelukkige 30ste verjaardag, from Belgium.

(Been reading you for a while now, thought I'd let you know).