It's about watching too many movies, trying to type quietly at 3am, rams, dreams & people.
I have two-and-a-half sets of best Worst Situations. I’ll tell you the half; and maybe the other two if we ever fall into this half situation. Have you ever wanted to be stuck in a lift with someone? The light is on, but dim, and warm… like Tungsten
One day, I’m going to write an elaborate plan which will ensure the passing of aforementioned situation. By that time, I will have adequately garnered the abilities of apparition and transformation of oneself into a baby. After we’ve sufficiently shared our life stories and the limited oxygen supply, I will unleash my powers and we will discover firsthand whether you would eat the baby or your arm. Luckily, when you are on the verge of either, a Morgan Freeman tenor tone will speak to you, giving you a pheasant and a spoon. We will then be transported into a field of rams, to engage in awkward conversation over poorly steeped and/or over sugary tea. Needless to say, I am looking forward to this. (MLIA)
Will I speaking to you as a) a ram, or b) a cup of tea? Or will you just remain in the form of a baby, and I will have to take care of you? Knowing how long it takes to master apparition/transfiguration of oneself, I am likely to be quite old by then, probably veering towards thirty. So by the time you’re sixty, I’ll be ninety, which is okay, because that’s the semi average age distance between a parent and a child.
As (: as your scenario is, let me clarify and say that I will transform back into my original form.
Haha. Okay. In that case, I would happily enjoy my time with you in your field of rams. I would probably have to learn how to make better tea to make you happy, and we will pass the art of steeping onto the many sheep/rams for generations to come. I’d stay as long as there are giant pools of insecurity to swim in (metaphorically swim, I hate literal swimming) and many lifts to get stuck in.
It’s always been a dream of mine to have a field of uncastrated male sheep. At night, we will keep them in the basement, next the pinball machine and the inflatable, life size, Miley Cyrus doll. By day we will load them onto a cart and wheel them down to the river (in threes because my cart has a broken third wheel). We will sit under the tree and eat avocados all afternoon; peeling the skin off in smooth circles with my craft knife. After we finish an avocado, we will throw the pip into the throng of sheep and yell ‘juniper juniper’. They will look at us with confused, beady eyes, but we will merely laugh and spray laser spray everywhere. On Tuesdays, we will take turns dressing up in a plastic ram costume, and wheezily tell the flock ‘Look, I am your father.’ It will be a good life.
What’s your favourite cupcake?
I can’t say I mind, as long as it’s in a cup. They’re not the same as muffins, Godammit.
What do you want done to your body when you die?
I think I’d like to have my body burnt and turned into a brick.
That’s nice. I’d like to be a brick in a nice building. When people walk past that nice building, they’ll kind of go, “That’s a nice building, it must have a lot of history. Maybe I’ll choose this historical building of niceness to write my thesis about, in my 7th year of studying in the building next to this unequally nice building.” Unbeknownst to this person, the nice building is made entirely of nice people. I assume however, that all the bricks would be indigo. It would be an impersonal, indigo building – filled with lots of unindigo personalities.
Chronic sufferers of actuallyrequitedunbeknownsttothemselves love can find sanctuary in the idea of finally being together when they are dead and bricky.
Unbeknownst things which exist after death is tragic. Yet again – it seems to have a kind of “we don’t have time to write a proper ending, so let’s end it with a death,” sort of ‘tilt-up-to-the-sky-while-the-Electric-Light-Orchestra-plays-Mr.-Blue-Sky’ feeling. Students will walk past, and fleetingly wonder at why all the bricks have names carved into them: maybe they were donated or something. And then they will walk away, write their thesis’s, think about people, and go to bed.
It could have ended there, but in true Hollywood fashion, the producers insisted on a sequel so that they could wring the plotline until it was dry.
The next movie starts with a pan on the foyer of aforementioned impersonal, indigo building. A permanent backing soundtrack is playing, as people try to find the one, sitting there, flicking through magazines which were new three years ago. And maybe the one ends up being a ram, come from a distant field on an important mission. He is waiting for thestupidladywhoneverseemstobeatthedesk to get back to her desk and actually do her job. This ram had to wait because he was too short to reach the office bell-a-ma-jig. He sighs, showing closed body language, and makes frustrated gestures to himself. A person might find themselves gravitating towards a certain corner of the foyer, picking up a magazine (equally as old, because they never restock), and reading it on a chair adjacent to the ram (never sit opposite if you don’t want to show indirect rivalry). And maybe this ram will just stand up and walk off when he sees that the desk lady has finally returned to her post. The person will know that one shouldn’t stare at things which aren’t their business. The ram will do whatever he is in the building to do, and then he will leave. But like in all movies, he had left his coat behind.
The camera flicks to a POV. You stare for a moment at the thick, black, trench coat. Should you touch it? You know it’s none of their business; you should just wait for thestupidladywhoneverseemstobeatthedesk to pick it up. You flip a couple of pages in your magazine; it smells faintly sour. You don’t know exactly what it is, but it does remind you of the Berry and Mango, 99.7% fat free yogurt the kids in block 26A have every morning. But what if he needs the coat? You decide to feel in his pockets a little, maybe you’ll find contact details. Tissues, hay, stationery paraphernalia, Vaseline, a tyre pump… a miniature poodle? And then you pull out a wad of business cards. Hopeful, you turn them over to read the tiny writing. To your utter astonishment, it has your name on it. And then it hits you: you are the ram.
No, this couldn’t be real at all. You hit yourself on the side of your head, expecting a flash of memories to materialise on the back of your eyelids. Muttering things you wouldn’t dare say in front of your deceased human caregivers, you berate yourself for putting so much faith in Friday Night Movies. You were in the real world now. You pick up your coat and walk out. It seems a little funny, how everyone else goes about their day… as if slaves of their own to-do list. Feeling slightly exhausted (only mentally, because a ram of such vitality never gets tired), you sit down on a nearby bench and gaze wistfully at passerbys. That’s odd, you see someone pushing their way through the crowd. It appears to be your father.
You sit dumbstruck. Your father said he was going to Vegas and “ne’er comin’ back ta this shit’ole.” It couldn’t be, it can’t be… but it is. His plastic raincoat has slipped half off, and his fleece is bedraggled from being caught in the rain. “Father?” you whisper, mostly to yourself. A tumbleweed rolls past, and the pedestrians turn into Gaussian blurs. Atmospheric music fades up; you swear you can almost hear the sound of cameras zooming in on your face. You are reminded of that Jim Carrey movie about the guy whose life is being broadcast live to the whole world unbeknownst to him. Coming to your senses, you hit yourself in the head for the second time that day, annoyed with yourself for forgetting yet again that this was not Hollywood. Slow motion running ensues, and the world spins haphazardly until there is only you and your father, standing in the middle of the town square as if you were in a fucking matrix.
“Father?” You repeat, still not quite believing it. “Is that… really you?”
You take a tentative step towards him, until you are close enough to see a single tear trail down his cheek.
“All those years… wasted.” he croaks in a rammish fashion. “I’m… going to make it up to you son,” he says, pulling a Scottish terrier out of his rain coat.
“Ruffy!” you half shout, half sob, opening your arms happily as Ruffy clambers excitedly all over your face.
“Ice-cream, son?” He asks, gazing into your beady eyes.
You can only nod, your larynx overwrought with emotion.
You knew that the crew pulled an establishing shot the moment you entered the parlour. The feeling of never knowing if something was there had grown on you over the years. It was like having trotters – they had just always been there. The absence of a soundtrack rendered things a little stale as you and your father walk across the generic, checked floor and sit at the booth with the spinney chairs. You assumed that he would order tea instead of ice-cream, as he always had. It was obvious that he had brought you here with the intention of letting you consume ice-cream, instead of the coffee you normally drank these days. And so you were faced with two choices. You could either
a) Order a banana split and have a deep meaningful conversation with your father about your past and the flock. This would likely end with you sobbing out your love for him into his woolly fleece, and with him whispering sweet condolences into the tuft of hair between your newly sprouted horns. You smile bitterly, remembering the day he took you fishing. Sure, he had whooped when you hooked your first starfish. He proceeded to place it carefully separate to the pile of trout he had already hooked; as if afraid his fish would be contaminated by your runtiness.
or you could,
b) Order a coffee with no sugar or cream (even though you swear they only used milk anyway) and have a hard chat about the sacrifices one has to make for happiness.
Luckily, your brain doesn’t over-think things. You open your mouth to make an order.
And wind up swallowing the whole world, which was only the size of a half farthing after all. (You’d always suspected this, but the evidence, like quantum mechanics, is often a little hard to come by).
The thing about insomnia; is that it makes for great sunrises.