I have this recurring thought. I’m sitting in a movie theatre. It’s this really old one I used to go to that was edged between an art deco milkshake parlor and a snazzed up pizzeria in the town I was born. It had this long, narrow, corridor, with padded walls, and soft plaid carpet matching the colour of the night sky outside. As the glass doors opened in front of you’d roll down its gradient till you felt a tingling of anticipation coz you were about to see each and every movie that was going to come out. You’d run up and glue yourself across the wall like a child gone mad with u-hu, marveling at all the plastered posters, lit up in (high pitched OHH) ‘godly’, polystyrene light. Here you’d have long winded conversations about; infamous actors, directors, and movie reviewers. Arguing why, certain ones were inferior, intellectually lacking, or just-a down right shame to be missed.
There’d rarely be a line. So, you’d arrive at the counter… pretty much straight away. Here you’d meet the same little old lady. The one that you could never get passed. She’d always be there, standing, ready, poised, like some kind of hawk, scoping her prey, from her now monstrous ticket booth. Of course she’d have a prepubescent teen working for her, (said at side of the mouth ‘on minimum wage’). That she’d flicker poisonous glances towards until the poor bugger would flinch. And this would go on right before our bloody eyes, at the same time she was serving, she was a slippery one. Sometimes this boys whole body would be quiver with unease, freeze up for a moment, and you’d think shit, is he still breathing? Then snap back up, and he’d continue laboring away as if nothing had happened. Except now he appeared as if he had a pole shoved up his ass and was zipping about the place in a much more regimented, up-tempo fashion. Of course we all know he was only sacrificing the same kind of situation at home. A–ll, for the price of a few underage drinks, yeh! (sarcasm).
As it was a ‘private’ joint she made sure of the fact that she had to ask. And with a stern, crinkled face, she’d crow ‘student I.D. please’ . I’d frown back at her, whilst picking at my faded, and now out-of-date uni card. All the while my mind was wandering on one thing, and one thing only …popcorn. I silently begged for it. Harboring away a ten foot tonne boombox in my head, with its play and record button stuck down repeating the god damn plea over and over ‘Please! look, I don’t care what you do, make me pay full price if you like, but can you PLEASE… give me some warm popcorn?!jjjjjj (rewind) repeat’. I’d keep trying even though i knew the outcome was hopeless. It was always stale.
Small and cramped the theatre seemed empty. So, with no one there to tell me otherwise, I pranced about the place as if my pants were on fire and gallivanted my way to be smack bang in the middle of it. Which is basically near to the front but not so close that you snap your neck back. I’m sure that’s gotta hurt.
The red curtains are drawn …dododododoododdoooo oh, I almost forgot, 20th century fox plays before hand, as per usual, following a lo—-ng li—-ne of ads…Ads make me feel so tired! Not surprisingly a down-slide takes hostage to my face, who I can now see (as I seem to have strangely retained my retina’s) has wound up naked on the floor. Rocking back and forth in the fetal position like a child. I make sure to scold him because I’m mad at the fact that he almost made me miss the most enchanted of moments. You know it? no? Oh well its this magical part where the 20th century fox literally jumps out of the screen, and plays the trumpet live!
Anyway, after all that jazz finishes up the lights dim out. And the ‘official’ action begins…. And I’m somewhat astounded at what I see….I mean, it’s me. Its me up there going through life as per normal with not a care in the world (clears throat) well, not aware of a care in the world, plain serene. And I’m transfixed, you know, I’m not sure what to do. I mean, it doesn’t make sense, does it? You looking at you. And then my mind is interrupted by a blunt blatant COUGH. And I turn back to look at me and think… ‘Fuck off!’ Behind me a popcorn box hides a familiar face, and I think, oh- my- god!… I’ve got to get out of this place! And we’re both frightened by fright you know with wide-open gaped screams ‘AH!’ ‘AH’ we yell, like that leave Britney alone girl ‘get the fuck outta my dreams!’.
And now I’m running out of the theatre with great balls of fire, wind blowing a rush, with hind legs flicking, and a head swinging a yoyo and teeth chattering to a toothbrush. My brain is convulsing with the buzzed migraine it now is, and because of its aggrandizement, its now decides- it thinks, twiddles it thumbs, and, mis-hears. It’s like king kong, running wild, with a big gong, singing at the top his lungs ‘hi ho, hi, ho it’s off to work we go!’ then smashing two high hats together, and, laughs!
‘Excuse me!’ I cough again, but this time its mine. ‘I’m trying to make sense of things!’…
I slowly spell out into the darkness… a… b …c… till i have words… that all surround me…and i think, by gorge, if they’re gonna stand around me, looking like that, staring straight down at me, I’m gonna have to ask;
So I take an old school mic and swing it in my glance.
‘You mean to tell me…it’s me, up there? And me, back there as well?’
I grab a bystanding number by the throat, (who appears from absolutely nowhere), and I begin to growl, like, some kind of mistreated dog, god knows for what reason.
‘Grrrr’ -i growl. ‘What is this thing?’ barking back i blubber with unease.
‘It can’t be real’ I say, shaking my head and attempting to make my lips vibrate ‘dis-mis-sal, dis-mis-al, dis-mis…’ Ugh, it doesn’t fucking work.
I let go (of the number 9, poor bugger, and my ridiculous upheaval). I slip….ah!, it was a banana peel. I stand, like a deer in the headlights, or… ah much better, a frozen icey-pop in a slot! Yes! And then I-I, I raise my mechanical arm to sing, DING! (Dong the witch is dead!) NO! not to sing god damn it to proclaim! (emphatic arm gesture) and I proclaim …‘it must be a dream!’.
But it’s a reoccurring thing you know, and it doesn’t just happen when I’m asleep. I mean, it happens when I’m awake too and I think, for fuck sake, can’t you just leave me be? I mean what am I supposed to do? With me me, and me. If there’s three me’s here then there could be infinite too. The possibilities are endless I could be living in a shoe. And then how do we make up? Wake up? Tap our foots in the same time? Sing the same tune? Or play in a pantomime? I’m not quiet sure right now but it doesn’t seem ….right, perhaps, I’ve forgotten the line, or, I’m sorry, I’ve… given up on the fight? I ponder (but only for an ultrasecond). Coz I don’t know the rhyme, I can’t sing it in time, and a fire burns out, and a phone rings, a clock chimes. BONG!… I mean, how am I supposed to think? I hear yells coming from the distance and everything got to reek.
‘Do you know the score?’ Great terrible red eyes beam, from the corner to the left of me, they peer out, from a massacred sweatshops last seam. And i think, could this get any worse? …I guess I could be whimpering cold and wet on someone else’s floor, soaked in urine, weed and booze, glass and cum from the night before, stressing, ‘What the fuck am i gonna do?! This is- so embarrassing, i don’t even own my own SHOE!’.
So, keeping with this fashion, i scream back, as if i the ‘need’ the distress ‘No, not me, I’m dreadfully poor!’ But the problem is, I’m not. I’m standing there in a shoulder padded dress, made by Gucci AND Dior. And when I cry out, now, because I’m aware of it, my voice sounds so minute. And I look down at my body and I gasp (GASP) I’ve been vaporized to the size of a newt! Now, mmm, if my calculations are correct..I must be..ahh yes wedged between a glass sliding door, and a balcony full of glorious sun. Deck chairs and aristocats are outside strutting their stuff, with bikini’s, having fantabulous fun. But no, not me I’m stuck here, like before, wishing it could be, but just knocking at the door. Maybe i should, you know, shape up to the bastard, let him know it’s he that’s won. Yeh, that sounds good, I’ll just open my mouth and surrender. Right after I spend a few more minutes carefully selecting the right words…you, you…and, y-o-u jjjjj Waa?’ I did all that for them to be sucked up and churned in a blender? ‘Not the score goddamn it the time!’ the voice chimes back, perfectly rhymed. ‘I’m a clock don’t you know… open your tired eyes and see, get back on the show, stop looking at me!’ Regardless of his instructions, like a naughty school child i can’t resist and i climb right up into that corner and glue my eyes like a clenched fist. I finally see, he’s only here trying to help, he’s not a bastard at all. So i get out my pen, notepad, and paper as if i’m getting ready for a test To harvest hard heeled facts, but he doesn’t appear, the red eyes seemed to have disappeared, now that i see past them he lends me no ear. but the facts are out of sight even with my binoculars i’m putting up a fight.
‘But… but… I’m confused’ I sigh, so, miserably. I try to explain ‘I didn’t even know you were there’. And my eyes would fall to floor, but then there’s a faint tinkle of feet, at the edge of my eyebrow hair. The clock has appeared, so my words aren’t in vain. With his little metal feet, and silver lining, he’s come to take away my pain. He puts his hands on his belly because before they were manically waving about. And then all stops to a stand still, still, I’m not sure what it’s about.
You see, it all made no sense to me, like algebra galore, a mixed tune, or a pus-y red sore. So I closed my eyes to make a wish… ‘I wish it to be plain and simple, like chickpeas…and… potatoes!’ (prayer)… Nothing. I sit down on a chair which then slumps to the ground. I’m like a cloud filled sky drifting back to where it was found. I hear the sound of traffic and BING BANG, big ZOOM! As if all the worries in the world were being sucked into a vacuum. A television sighed, masked fighters Syrians lied, Facebook whistled a tune, eighteen small children face down to the moon.
And my pen crossed out and re-wrote again and again. Till it menaced me, and built up, like a skyscrapers den. With chipmunks clubbed to death by a nutcracker caged hen, with DOO! DOO! lost youth rave in ‘heaven!’, with goats BabaBAAAHING fucking up mary’s black sheep! with millions with no parking, staring at computers that have no sleep! AHh! I shout out like a crazy women i now am. Till my arms are pinned back by authorities… and i’m screaming ‘It’s a scam!’… but little do I know, these donkeys, are my ray of hope. And i lay down my bearings and jump over their skipping rope.
Everything goes black, like I’ve sunk down into the deep pupils of my mind but the irises aren’t rising. I see my tent grow legs, then run down the slop to shout back at me ‘so long sucker, your on your own!’. I stumble through the darkness howling ‘OO!’…’OO!’…’OO! How will I ever find my way without a light?! I’ll be stuck in this darkness forever ! My days will be lost to night!’ I hear a loud electrical fuse, as if someone had turned on a great big industrial lighting board, then…Silence… me, and a white screen… Not static, not light, just clear, blank, white. And I think. And as I think, my thoughts appear, in the silent space, in front of me.
Why do I feel crazy and it’s called normal?
And when I’m called crazy I feel sublime?
Why can’t I feel like this all of the time?
I get Alan Cummings on the phone, or that guy from My Fair Lady down the line. They both say ‘your eating too much, don’t you know that it’s shit (which sounds really strange from their lips), you’ll make yourself sick, take one plate at a time’. No oil, no salt is planted on a road sign. I hold onto it for a moment then I’m swept into Yesterdays Ocean. And I’m tumbled dried so fast, I wish I hadn’t spoken. The whole world is swimming, at my front door.me. So it’s obvious, I’ve gotta go out, see what I’m looking for. There’s a rubber ducky waiting for me with a blow mattress for a floor. ‘Did it just rain?’ I ask, i need a piss, i can’t hold it anymore. I look down and i’ve got a maraca in my hand, with an aching wrist of… bliss?! And suddenly i see, I I’m in a spaceship flying out of this abyss. Up into the night the sky, through the cosmos, and down on the moon. If I can get rid of this fat controller, i’ll throw away his keys, and misfortune. Get back to living again, peel the Velcro from the floor, push back the strands that fall across my face, pull my hands from against the wall.
And the prospect of weeing again is just too good to refuse. So I put my arms down close to its edge, and jump into its blues.
I fall onto a lined page inside the cover of a book. And here I decide to take a walk for a while, clear my mind, have a look. I get to a spot that’s so beautiful, and beckoning in its page. It’s easy enough to answer its yearning, stop turning, and admit its gaze. I sit myself down on an iron stone bench. I breathe in my surroundings, with a class book in clench. It was like I’d finally found that tranquility I’d needed and painted it from my mind. I was at my airport checkout, but I’d left everything behind. Everything went still, and I could hear the winds rushing once more. The sun was on my back, and I just knew what I was fighting for. I opened the book in front of me and held it preciously in my hands. And suddenly my toes were wriggling, my feet were sinking in beach sands. I was running so fast into my own homes ocean with a surfboard to break my fall. And just as I hit the cold hard waters and heard the crashing waves uproar… I turned back to look at me with a cheeky smile i grinned. And who’d of thought I’d happen to see two audience members still pinned. In an old movie theatre, they looked up at me and now they too both saw. That life is just a dream waiting to be, we won’t keep denying anymore.