SURREAL ADVENTURES FROM THE SOUTH SANDWICH ISLANDS

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

My life as a ghost writer (II)

After the failed meeting I rushed to the street, where Bob was waiting for me.

- How was the meeting? –he asked-
- Shitty. What a pompous asshole.-I answered in total discouragement-.
- What happened?
- He wants me to write a kinky, erotic and violent story. He thinks it will make the book more commercial and better marketed. I suppose this is the editorial line.
–I said-

We kissed goodbye and I sadly walked to work, where I had the most surrealistic telephone conversation with my colleague, Big Shot’s Chief of Staff:

- Hey Q, I wonder if you could do me a lil' favour –she asked, very charmingly-

If my memory serves me well, I have already mentioned here that part of my work is to do her work, including a considerable number of favours and bullshit.

- Sure, Liz. What is it you want? –I answered, not so friendly-
- The Chairman forgot something in the top drawer of his desk: a small yellow box. Would you mind putting it into an envelope? I’m sending his chauffeur to pick it up and deliver it to his house.
- Ok.

So I asked the security guy to open Big Shot’s office for me; I entered the room; walked to his desk; opened the drawer and there it was: The small yellow box.

It said: "Hemorrhoidal Ointment". Eek!!! And I had already touched it!!!

This is what I call “intellectual work”! I carefully put the ointment box in an enveloppe and gave it to the assisstant.

- The Chairman’s chauffeur will pick up this envelope. Don’t touch it. It’s toxic.
- Toxic???
–she asked, very alarmed-
- You heard me. Don’t touch it.

She didn’t know that yet, but I had saved her from massive vomication. And I rushed to wash my hands. I washed them one… two… three consecutive times. Then, I went back to my desk, feeling more relaxed.

Two hours later, an office boy knocked on my door:

- Miss Qinan. This is for you. A boy from a flower shop left it at the reception desk. –he said-
- Oh, ok, thanks. Put it there, please. –I said pointing at the meeting table-

He was carrying a huge bunch of beautiful blue daysies. I knew they were not from Bob. He would have done anything for me, like the scale model of a dumping site for nuclear waste or a fake Molotov cocktail; but not flowers. He always said that was awfully corny.

There was a card in the middle of the flowers that said: “Let’s talk”. Ed Davies.
I nearly fell from my chair. So he wanted to make peace. I was still pissed off, but I called him.

- Ed Davies. –he answered-
- Don’t flatter me with flowers, ‘cos it won’t work. – I said-
- Hiya Leni. –he laughed-. I’m sorry about our rough meeting, but I am convinced that we could reach an agreement if we met again in a more relaxed atmosphere. Let’s have dinner and discuss our pending issues.

Dinner? Dinner with Ed Davies could be murder. That guy really made me nervous. Why not just a cup of coffee instead?

- Hm. I don’t know Ed. I usually don’t go out at night during the week. I have a day work and get up early. –I said-
- Oh you won’t die for changing your habits just one day, Leni. There’ll be some good friends of yours as well. Bring your boyfriend. That will be fun.
- It seems the world and his wife are gonna be there.

- All of them are nice people.
- Like who?
- Like Hellgirl and Percival. I’ll meet you at Le Chauteaubriand at 8:00PM.


Bob was not very happy with the idea of having lunch with the nasty editor.

- I may smash his face in if he doesn’t let you write what you want, Len. –he said-
- That’s very sweet, baby. But to be honest, I think it’s better if I go there on my own.
- Yeah, I agree.

I was okay with that, I would have done the same if I had been in his shoes. So that evening I got all dolled up and drove downtown to Le Chateaubriand: the poshest restaurant in South Sandwich.

The hell gang had booked a private room. Hellgirl was absolutely radiating -as usual- and Percival –dull as ditchwater- was holding a scotch glass and approached me to greet me.

- Welcome darling, we were waiting for you. –he said, blowing a kiss-

Hellgirl and I kissed. Ed tried as well, but I stopped him:

- Sorry, but I don’t kiss. –I said-
- But you kissed her. –he protested, pointing at Hellgirl-
- Don’t take it personal, Ed, but I’m very picky when it comes to kiss.

We sat at the table that was covered with cold cuts and crudités. Two waiters brought a huge roastbeef tray. Hellgirl did the honors and carved it. As soon as the waiters served the dishes, the scene started looking like the remake of La grande bouffe. The hellguys and gall ate like horses. And, in all honesty, they ate like pigs as well.

- So tell me Leni. What are your plans for our common project? –said Hellgirl-
- Goth suggested me to tell you that I'm not a ‘real’ ghost writer, because ghosts can't hold pens or stuff.
- Tell Goth that it was a nice try, but it won’t wash. –she said, roaring with laughter-
- He also suggested that I could write some complete bollocks and call it 'The Burble' where silly people with big beards talk shite and they have speed boats with animals that can't swim and stuff. Sounds surrealistic, but...
- Hm. ‘The Burble’. What do you think guys?
- I assume you may not like that. It will be your novel after all.
- Assumptions will find you in positions you do not care to be in, Leni.
–she said, staring at me seriously-

I remained quiet, as I racked my brains, looking for a good answer.

- Listen, Hellgirl. I offered to write the novel and I will do a fine job. But I’m an author. A creative mind. If you lock me in a cage, I will be unable to work and the book will be a shoddy piece of work. I hope you understand my point.

Hellgirl sighed.

- Of course, I do. You're allowed to create as much as you please. But it has to be good stuff. Not complete bollocks. So don’t kid me. –she said, challenging me-
- I won’t.
- Good.


It became dark. Some soft dancing music could be heard and the lights illuminated a small dancefloor behind us. The guys were still eating like pigs. Hellgirl looked nervous. She was stamping her feet on the floor.

- Anyone asking me to dance? I’d love to dance. -said Hellgirl-

There was no answer.

- Like I said, they’re daft as a brush.
- Hey Hellgirl, forget about these ones and dance with me -I said-

She nodded; we got up and danced the strangest tango ever seen. But it was a very nice dance. When we finished, Percival and Ed were looking at the two of us, fascinated

- Wipe the drool of your shirt, blokes and stop the dirty fantasies. We’re only dancing. Go, Leni. Write down that masterpiece for me! -said Hellgirl-

It was midnight when I left. The streets were empty. The streetlights projected macabre shadows on the sidewalks. I drove to Bob’s place. I knew he was sleeping since 22:00 but I didn’t want to be alone.

- Sorry to wake you up in the middle of the night. But I wanted to be with you. –I said, pouting-
- Come in, babe.

I took my clothes off and snuggled into bed with him. The contact of lips with lips and skin with skin calmed me down.

As he held me, I laid my head on his chest, closed my eyes and slowly fell asleep to the steady sound of his heartbeat.





Arrangement by Mark Isham of a traditional Welsh love song circa 18th century, called "Lisa Lan", whose composer is unknown. The singer's name is Carol Ensley.
Incredibly awesome and haunting.

15 comments:

Grass said...

Eeek, did you say hemorrhoidal ointment? Hahahha! Want to borrow my strawberry-yoghurt liquid soap to wash your hands so they smell good again? hehehe :D I don't remember you mentioning about Big Shot's assistant though..hmmm

Hmmm, Mr. Ed is a little moody, isn't he? He would be rude one time and be apologetic and nice the next day.. weird.. And how come none of the guys want to dance with Hellgirl? :)

xxx

Leni Qinan said...

Hi sis,

Yeah, I said hemorrhoidal ointment, and I certify this is not a work of my imagination, but 100% true!!!
I couldn’t help thinking: “What if he didn’t wash his hands after… Eek!!!”

Sorry for the gross passage, but these things –and others- happen when you have to look after a Big Shot/Cheese. They’re so f*ck*ng stuck-up that you would think they don’t even poo, but they do, hahaha. And they even get piles.

Liz is a RL person –looking at the things she does you would say she’s an assistant, but she’s not. She is Big Shot’s Chief of Staff and I do the same job for Big Cheese. Apart from my work, I have to do her dirty –and the not-so-dirty- chores and then she gets the compliments, how funny is it?

Ed is a very nice guy, Grass, -as you will be able to see in the future and I hope we definitely make peace soon- but he is a little bit

-under Hellgirl’s pressure.
-influenced by his profession –he’s a successful editor-
-of course, interested about me.

I can’t explain why neither Ed nor Percy wanted to dance with Hellgirl (or me). Maybe they were shy to ask –Brotanians and Burdish are very shy and reserved guys-. I asked her to dance because I was worried she would be pissed off and turn to her whip slasher mode. ;)

Big big kiss. :)

max said...

Hi Leni,

I'm glad to see you could solve the freedom of expression issue at last, directly with Hellgirl -I understand you would not be comfortable at all being forced to write about specific subjects-.

But you can do a kinky-erotic-violent story, can't you? In fact you already did! I've read your "Diary of a Slave Girl" and it's thrilling!

Goth's suggestion was good anyway -you keep the good stuff for yourself and write shit for Hellgirl- but she's not dumb!

Hm. Hemorrhoidal ointment. What a crappy boss you have. I bet he wears Italian silk shirts and Armani jackets too. The sod.

I won't deny the sight of two girls dancing is amazingly sexy. I would have asked the 2 of you to dance with me at the same time!

XXX. Keep smiling!

Leni Qinan said...

Max,

No I’m not happy at all being told what to write about. I’m not happy with the idea of writing a book upon request, either but I guess I asked for it. So I will.

Thanks for your comment about my “Diary of a Slave”. I’m not writing again a book like that one –I struggled for 6 months to write it and, to be honest, I’m not that kinky myself!-. Anyway, it’s the longest and strangest book I have ever written and I love to hear you liked it.

Yeah, I appreciated Goth’s suggestions too, but I’m sure Hellgirl would have gone mad if I wrote about that. I’ll be burning in hell, anyway –tho I hope I won’t be there within the next 100 years, lol-.

About Big Shot: I won’t comment for the moment –I want to keep my job!- but yes, you’re right.

I knew you were very fond of that fantasy too. It’s a classic -2 girls and 1 guy-. Greedy. LOL.

XXX.

JolietJake said...

Sun Tzu says "the best vicories are won without a battle being fought" - The Art of War

Grass said...

Wow, welcome Joliet Jake on Leni's blog site.. :D It's nice that you quoted the art of war.. But please enlighten us.. how is that phrase related to this post? :D

Sis, you're right about people like Big Shot. Heck, I have yet to imagine our own president having periods or peeing or shitting even.. She could have hemorrhoids or even tapeworms for all we know!! double eeek!!!! LOL

I'm sorry if you have to work for someone like Liza. I haven't worked with someone like her because my profession usually puts me on technical positions but I can empathize with you.. You might want to try putting farting pillow or thumb tacks on her seat just to get even! LOL The evil in me talking!!

The two frigid guys were too reserve indeed to ask vainglorious girls like Hellgirl. Or they probably have two left feet when they dance and Hellgirl will surely whip their asses if they step on her well-pampered feet! LOL

Dancing with you would be a pleasant change.. Why don't we try rumba next time? I can already imagine Max watching with eyes wide shut and mouth hanging open and drooling LOL

Sorry Max, that's naughty me talking this time.. LOL


big big kiss to my sis.

a warm smile to everyone else..

Leni Qinan said...

"Thus, what is of supreme importance in war is to attack the enemy's strategy"

Also from Sun Tzu's The Art of War

Welcome aboard JolietJake, nice to read some Eastern wisdom and mystical thoughts in this humble house. I second you. That's really good advice, I appreciate.

Let's see if I'm clever enough to put this into practice. ;)

Leni Qinan said...

Hi again Grass!

In my opinion, Joliet Jake's sentence relates to this post because I have a 2-front war in this post -against hell's minions and my private war at work-.

Think clever to solve these situations, and there will be no battle (this is what I think he was trying to tell me) -the strategy is what matters, not the war itself. It's with our mind that we must defeat our enemies. So I need a strategy instead of messing around all the time.

Please, JJ correct me if I'm wrong, cos I'm not an expert in the art of war. Someone gave me the book, but i didn't finish reading it.

About big shot: to my luck, I only see him on wednesdays but have to put up with Liz every single day. I try not to think about their hemorrhoids, tho (just wish they grow bigger and bigger, hahaha!).

You're lucky to have a work where these situations are not very frequent. Dealing with protocol -what i do a number of times- most of the people are false. You can't trust them, cos all the people are nice, but you may be easily double-crossed. Such is life.

I think neither Percy nor Ed are good dancers, but it's basically their shy mentality -Hellgirl and me are not at all like that-. Maybe the word 'frigid' is too strong, lol.

Oh yes, I'd love to dance with you! rumba, waltz, salsa, anything!

And Max is an old swine! I know him very well! hahaha.

Big kiss, sis & take care!

max said...

Grass:
As I said before, I insist: I wouldn't mind dancing a tribal dance with you two girls at on the beach at midnight.

Of course, my Lilly would be there too. I can cope with the three of you. Hahahahaha!

Leni: Yes, this is a classic. One of my favorites.

Grass said...

Ooops, sorry, frigid was a typo, i meant RIGID!!!! Oh shoot.. :(

hmmm, i haven't read the art of war.. but you're right about having good strategies so that war doesn't happen in the first place..


xxx

Leni Qinan said...

Never mind, sis.

'Frigid' would have done as well, hahaha. As long as they're not offended.

About 'The art of war' and strategies... it takes brains to set up a strategy to avoid war -gotta do that, I guess-.

Just watched a concert of Jamiroquai. I'm still monkeydancing!!!

Grass said...

Max: I'm not sure Leni will like the idea of dancing with Lily!

Sis: Jamiroquai? Who is he? :) Is he good? :D


xxx

Leni Qinan said...

Sis,

I'm not sure I'd like to dance with Lilly myself. Grrrrrrr. I hate that gal.

As per Goth, Google doesn't have all the answers, but if they're not in google, they're in Wiki.

So Jamiroquai:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jamiroquai

And their official website:
http://www.jamiroquai.co.uk/

The concert was at the Rock in Rio festival:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rock_in_Rio

If u scroll down the mouse you'll get to the 2008 edition. There are several stages with many concerts going on. These are the ones I saw:

Alanis Morisette
Neil Young
Stereophonics
Amy Winehouse
and I expect to see Mr Kravitz and Chris Cornell tonight.

Gonna see Beck next week too.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beck
http://www.modernguilt.com/#5

max said...

Grass -> There should be no problem between Leni and Lilly -but Leni is a bit resentful, and I don't expect them to become good friends-

Leni -> I saw The Police yesterday at Rock in Rio. Oldie but goodie! I really enjoyed! Grass is such a baby, I dont think she knows who they are, hahaha! (sorry Grass, I couldn't help it!)

s said...

hrm you got me all confused, i noticed this morning that i missed this post, sorry.
Hemorrhoidal ointment, eh hahah thats funny, kinda gross too indeed. Hopefully he washed his hands afterwards, but i really hope you did too :P
Good to see Hellgirl understood your position.