(Another snippet from ‘This is it’ – my Fantasy / Autobiography)
Something on an old sheet of paper torn from a notebook – written around 1969 when I was 17. Like many of the pieces I post on here it is completely unedited – just the beginnings of a work-in-progress. This horrifies some of my writer friends but since there is very little chance of it being fully developed this is the only way it will get an airing – and in any case I like it and it means something to me.
What was that noise, a screech, no just noise. Noise of what, thought the tramp, noise of excitement, he concluded, what excitement, he restarted. Round the bend of the car park came a gathering, hippies they were, all together, messing about with a skin-head.
‘Okay,’ shouted the skin. ‘Okay.’ Louder. ‘So you prove your point.’ Hysterically. ‘Okay – O-bloody kay.’
They all stopped, gave him his boots back and offered him food from a bag, a brown paper bag. Irrelevant. Brown paper bags were very common in town on Saturday. Everybody had one, under arms, in bags, trolleys and other convenient spaces; it was the day of the brown paper parcels, conform, buy your brown paper parcel today. Horror, I’ve got one round my bubble-tube, get rid of it, ceremoniously execute the conformity of brown-paper parcels. Irrelevant. It’s Christmas, a change, bells, green leaves, red hats, and multi-coloured paper wrapped parcels. Irrelevant. Brolly time, out of nowhere comes the dreaded rain, my God you must not get wet. What a disaster. Wetness, put up your brolly, tuck your parcel more securely. Irrelevant. Do you feel secure? Irrelevant. Of course. ‘I’ve got a house. At least I earn my living.’ Irrelevant. Living, are you living? Are you dying? Are you preparing? Comfortable? Irrelevant. ‘I like my work.’ Well it’s better than hanging around doing nothing. Nothing at all. Sleep long. Watch the taxman, watch the Axeman. Worked hard, got bread. Irrelevant.
The smiling face of Mr Punning caught me in the eye, yes sir, no sir, bollocks sir. ‘Ah well,’ thought, then said Mr Punning. ‘Restless these youngsters today, never had it so good. Lucky they don’t live in the same place as those,’ a sudden twist to fascism, ‘Dirty Red Bastards.’ He sighed heavily, that was hard to get out, but he’d said it. Pity no-one heard him though. He was sitting in a park eating his packed lunch out for a change. ‘There you are duck,’ he said, thinking how kind he was, yes the English were kind to animals.
‘Excuse me, man.’ Punning jumped agitatively. ‘I heard that.’ What had he heard thought Sir. ‘What about the bomb?’ said the man. Irrelevant. He hurried off tucking his brown paper parcel and putting his brolly up for a spit of water. Irrelevant my foot. My foot? Irrelevant.