Back in Hell. Feels like home


For the last six months I have posted very little; this is largely due to the fact that I had temporarily descended into the Hell of non-smoking and sober practises. All that bullshit is over and done with now, praise the Lord. Where the fuck have I been.

Now the last you heard, my father the Brando-sized “Tom Jones” aka Archie Shitsville had recently returned from the dead, a new but still very old sad man; my idle cousin Francis Garland was slowly but surely drinking himself into a wheelchair (he now lives in the garret, occasionally calling down to me something about the heebie-jeebies), and the knee-high Louis heeled boots of the effervescent Nancy Sinatra could be heard echoing all over the polished wood floors of Shitsville Ranch day in day out. What happened next can only be recounted if I stifle the gagging reflex: Nancy and Archie hooked up for the 17th time since 1967, and the frenetic slurkslurkslurk sound of geriatric love could be heard resounding from the bathroom at all times of the day; the water roared, hot begonia-scented steam crept out from under the bathroom door and filled the living room with a fog so thick I couldn’t see the TV three feet infront of me, and the fishtank in the wall overheated so everything but the most exotic fish turned over and floated to the top.



For months and months the halls were strewn with soggy clothing, crashing, slipping, slurping, and mein pater’s vigorous cursing and profanity-laden endearments, “Hot damn, you are wetter than a mermaid!”;“Steamier than the hot springs!”; “Sexier than a gaggle of presenting negresses” and so on, and so forth, gag gag gag to infinity all the live long day. Then when Nancy was gone I would hear him in the shower singing Lana del Rey in that thundering voice that could move mountains:

‘Will you still love me when I’m no longer young and beautiful… Will you still love me when I’ve got nothin’ but my aching soo-oullll… I know you will, I know you will, I know you willlllllllll…’

(this last word often seemed to blend in with the sound of him gurgling from the shower head.)

3f0f941013637f965dba4d5ba9fd0a4bI’d never seen the sad fat man happier in his life, except possibly on the day he discovered there was a website that would send you free underwear… and then the inevitable happened. Nancy Sinatra’s high heeled boots clattered along the corridor one last time and were heard no more; in fact it was I who had to drive her down the side of the rainy mountain while the monkeys threw banana skins, geranium heads and empty bottles of cocoanut oil after us.

It was raining solemnly, and I was squinting over the steering wheel to see. For the longest time Nancy said nothing but sat puffing Menthols. At last I stopped the car next to the only payphone on State Highway 71 and before she swung her boots out onto the flooding gravel she said, in her sweet girlish gin-cracked voice, “Honey, I once thought your father was the love of my life, and sobbed every night like a broken whore when he left me for your mother; but I’m saying to you right now that I would have to be demented to ever go back to that burnt meringue of infected sperm and ingrown toenails; I’ll shoot myself before I do. Hell, damn and goodbye.”

That was the last I saw of her for a while, calling one of her legitimate sons from the pay phone, while the windows steamed up, and a group of ravens shook the water from their wings and dropped cat carcasses from the power lines.

Continued here: Will you still love me when I’m not beautiful.


O flightless bird (Mr. Chicken)


Now the time had come. I went to my father Tom Jones and said, “Papa, dear, darling sweetest papa, I think it’s time that the truth came out. You are Frankie’s father. The parallels are too obvious to ignore. If you weren’t so physically akin you could still tell because you are both delusional and sort of sad and lost and resorting to desperate tactics in order to fumble your way through this world with stubby fingers slick with grease from the carry out buckets of Mr. Chicken I’ve found hidden about the house.”

But more than that, I was sick to death of both of them. I envisioned a glorious future where those two half-wits clubbed together in the belief that they would make a single wit, then went off to live in a shack in the mountains having subscribed to the theory that a body can  live by absorbing the minerals found naturally in air and rays of sunlight.

Then a very strange look came over Tom Jones; if I didn’t know any better I might have thought he was choking on a chicken bone that he’d swallowed when I came into the room so suddenly.

“Hell,” he said — with tears in his eyes. If I didn’t know any better I might have thought the bone was killing him. “Hell, Frankie ain’t my son. I wish he was…”

“Come now, father, enough lies,” said I.

Cough – cough -cough — a wishbone came flying out of his throat and pinged against the wall.  O chicken,  sweet, sad flightless bird, with your moronic gaze and absurd clucking, don’t you know that this is ‘the best of all possible worlds’ only because God is incapable of changing anything to improve it without simultaneously making it worse: bad and good are so delicately balanced, like the rainforest…

“But it’s true,” said my father. “I know it’s true because I know who Frankie’s real mother is — Nancy Sinatra.”


“I swear I never touched her. Frank Snr said he’d cut my dick off if I ever went near. Then he blacklisted me anyway, the cunt. His real father is that race-car driver who died under mysterious circumstances in 1974 –” Cough Cough Cough — Another bone; he must have swallowed the whole tiny chicken. He was turning really pink now. I watched him go on choking for a while.


Rambling Rose Cottage

Marilyn Monroe and Arthur Miller

Naturally it occurred to me that I could tell cousin Francis the truth and make him look absurd… moreso… on the Morning Show. I can’t see that low grade TV celebrity does him many favours. His face looks too wide and his eyes proportionately smaller, as though they have retracted on their stalks away from the bright studio lights and the rank stench of whoring yourself to Channel 7. Anyway never mind that. Instead of sitting on a murderous rage like I have done before, I went to see my psychotherapist. She is a very wise and learned woman who looks like Helen Mirren. I found her quite by chance when looking through the phone book because she practices in a place called ‘Rambling Rose Cottage’ and the lovely name struck a pleasant chord with me and my poetic soul.  It is a doctor’s surgery like any other, just with a few more lavender bags and scented soap bars stuck around for good measure. But Dr Mirren sits on one of those transparent plastic ghost chairs, which makes her look like she is levitating, and radiates reticence and expensive perfumes in the honeyed sunlight, like all good psychologists should.

I had expected her to tell me that I was repressing a great fear that my cousin was usurping my rightful place but instead she waved all that aside, pointing out that it didn’t seem as though I liked my father very much when it came down to it. “But really,” she said at last, “this paranoid delusion you have that Frank Sinatra is the cause of your failure in life is one of the most absurd things I’ve ever heard in my career, and I have met seventeen Jesus’s and twelve Napoleons. Most people will only get as far as imagining that they are being persecuted by the government or the CIA, which might after all in fact be the case in this political clime. But Frank Sinatra was a charming man of prodigious talent. When you accuse him of blacklisting you, you only sound like an embittered TV and Variety entertainer.”

“It’s not a paranoid delusion if it’s the truth, it’s just a sad fact,” I sniffed. “Nancy Sinatra told me herself when she was signing the cheque; she said, ‘I’ve added an extra zero to make up for what my father did to you.'”

Dr. Mirren took a long time writing this down. It had never struck me that she might be an old blue eyes fan. You can never tell by looking. I sniffed again.

Finally we agreed upon a course of strong blue pills and she advised me that it would be best if I simply found Love and Welcomed Frankie into the family… moreso. Now that he’s found a masculine ideal to graft himself onto he is looking less wet than usual, I must admit, even if his face has got wider there is a bloom to it.

So I hightailed it up to Shitsville Ranch, to settle the matter one way or the other. The woods were filled with sweet birdsong, peonies and gentian larkspur were in blossom, a radiant light suffused the glen and all around was the pleasant hum of honeybees. I went in and found my father Tom Jones in the kitchen making another lemon and cayenne pepper slimming brew.

Family Romance

I have been having a hard time lately keeping my cousins alive. There may in the end be something about me that is essentially antithetical to cousins, but though I have from time to time wished a pestilence upon them, please believe me when I say that is a far cry from hoping to see them sicken and die. In fact last time I believed Rufus to be dead, I was very much relieved to find out that he was alive as it gave me the opportunity of killing him myself. Generally my approach to cousins has always been to treat them with the kindness one shows to beloved dogs; that is, to give them a very long lead so they have the impression of freedom, even if you enforce more grooming and less food than they would choose for themselves.

Marilyn Misfits

You remember of course my cousin Francis Shitsville. He has become a drunkard of late and is known as Frankie the Sot down at the law courts, where the worst thing you can say about a lawyer is that he feels things very deeply. The colour has run out of his eyes and  he can barely manage to hold a cigarette while he trembles over his morning coffee, which is a far cry from the Francis I knew in his lusty youth. In fact he has developed the look of one of those poor souls not long for this world.

Marilyn Monroe, The Misfits

In his delirium after Archie died, Frankie began to imagine things. For one, he has come to believe that he is secretly Archie’s son. This is not as absurd as it may sound as I’m sure my father has at least half a dozen illegitimate children scattered around the greater Vegas area  (the only question is why was he named ‘Frank’ after my father’s great enemy Frank Sinatra, Snr). In fact there are times when I can see a distinct family resemblance between them: the ducky double chin, the solid little belly, the splayed feet, the impression of his thighs in body makeup that he leaves behind on the sofa when he finally dresses after midnight on Naked Sunday, and the long black hairs and brylcreem with which Frankie clogs the shower drain. If indeed Frankie is my half-brother and not my fifth-cousin then he has a legitimate claim to inheriting my father’s money (however little that may be). In any case as he is a lawyer (though not a very good one) I’m sure he could find some way to swing it. It would certainly help him in his acting career if Matthew Newton is anything to go by.



Technically a lifeline is also enough rope to hang yourself with. I am keeping that in mind now that things in my life seem to have developed a kind of upside. I am presently ensconced in the sunny Greenacres Estate outside of the sunny state of Shitsville (TX) having absconded from Shitsville Ranch in the dead of night with my hefty Sinatra sympathy cheque.  Some jerk has made a TV show called “Shitsville Express” and I don’t want any of those sad fucks in support hosiery who go on bus tours to the “Neighbour’s” street in sunny Vermont South feeling ‘with it’ or ‘on-trend’ enough to jump into a ricketty charablanc and hightail it up the hill to peep at me and my splendid mid-century split-level Ranch and to leave their rubbish and empty Coke bottles in my hedges as such people are always wont to do.


The precise reason that I live high up in the hills on Shitsville Ranch is because I would like at every moment of my life to be mathematically or geographically and geopolitically as far removed from other people — those vile, vile, vile half-wits and mongoloids who call themselves ‘human beings’ — as it is possible to be. Every day they — the vile, vile people — say “we are getting better and better” and “technology is changing our lives” while reverting to the pre-evolutionary state of great apes who use simple tools and frogs’ mouths to masturbate with.

I figured that by the time  Nancy Sinatra and cousin Frankie and my father Archie Shitsville awoke from their comas and worked out precisely who and what was still alive, (“Oh Nancy, dear Nancy, I did not mean to deceive you, it was a requiem for my heart which is dead,”) I would be far far away, sunning by the calm waters of a blue tiled pool, watching the fringe on the sun umbrella playing in the breeze. It is a return to God’s green and pleasant land, the endless blue days that one knew in one’s youth. There is a coral pink telephone here (unconnected) and the postman always rings twice as a warning.




A brief lesson in sexual psychology

It had been five days now and Frankie was entirely soaked; he had lost his healthy glow, his lusty high colour; his wan cheeks were dimly phosphorescent; he looked like he’d walked out of the ocean wearing his business suit; when I tried locking him in the bathroom so he could dry out for a bit he was so legless he simply slipped out again from under the door like gelatinous zooplankton. One thing I will say about Frankie is that even when he has not slept for days he can still look remarkably clean, like a hairless cat. “Your father was such a charismatic bastard,” he said. “It would take a lot to kill him. Sometimes I think I can still feel him near. He really was larger than life…”

“That’s for sure,” said I.

“I never had a father,” he said. He was staring at his plate, and his eyes were twice as large as the poached eggs, as though he expected to be able to absorb the nutrients by thought waves.

“Oh, everybody has a father,” said I, with conventional wisdom. “Even if you think you don’t, some Freudian somewhere will some day succeed in nutting him out. Would you like me to cut your toast into fingers for you?”

But Frankie was trembling so much he could barely control his own fingers and kept dropping his cigarette onto the table-top. It was mainly to cheer Frankie up that I decided we should hold a funeral party.

That grim act Patricide

Marilyn Monroe

Over the next few days Frankie’s taste in music deteriorated with his mood and a bottle of gin (the tequila was long gone, a distant memory); from “Candle in the Wind” (the Princess Diana version) it was now Robbie Williams’ “Angels…” on repeat. Poor Francis was always such a sensitive soul, almost too fragile for this world. For my part I stayed outside nicking fags from the packet he’d left on the table when he finally crawled off insensible with drink. You should know I smoke for effect in this blog more than anything; I largely quit a year ago, which is to say that all of the joy vanished from my life shortly after Davy Jones died. In case you are starting to think I am completely heartless (as Frankie said, “You haven’t got a h-h-heart cousin,” when I suggested perhaps he’d been drunk for three days now) the thought that Archie was dead hadn’t really sunk in yet, or perhaps I am more savvy than you realise: my father was well known for surprising quantities of Revivals and Comeback tours. In any case as I told Frankie, “It’s a bittersweet symphony, this life,” which is the sentiment that generated when I peered at the label on the empty Espolon tequila bottle (gradually filling up with fag ends); it wasn’t long after that Frankie got the yips and started calling out to me that he could feel tiny skeletons running over him.