Beetroot & I #8

March 23, 2011

Beetroot & I is a weekly column/diary piece that I write for
Wednesday, March 23rd

With a quick finger lick and a thick quiff flick, the swordsman presented himself to me. It was with his theatrical flourish and his hair nicely nourished, that I knew this man’s identity. He slapped my cheek with a posie and when it turned painfully rosie, I knew it was non other than he. He bowed ever so slightly and tipped his hat so politely. All he said was “Je me present the infamous, Morrissey.”

I had long since been warned, that many husband had been mourned while travelling to Nantes by the sea. Monsieur Renault had said, “My boy you’ll be dead, if you don’t heed this warning from me. There is a crooner who stalks, these roads and these walks. Death is his only currency. I’m sure you’ll meet there, a thief with great hair, who goes by the name, Morrissey.”

“Stand and deliver, I can see that you quiver, clearly you’ve heard tales of me.” I stayed quiet and kept shtum, my plan was to play dumb, and pray that he just let me be. But this fiend showed me no favour and as his face turned much graver, he severed my leg below the knee. As I hopped on one foot, he carved an ‘M’ in my gut and proclaimed “That stands for… Morrissey.”

Karl Vaughan just stared at me.

“I – I wrote it for you” I stumbled.
“I don’t understand” he continued to stare blankly back at me. “You wrote me a poem?”
“Yeah! It’s about Morrissey. If he was a Zorro type character. You know? But if Zorro lived in France” Karl continued to stare. “And he wasn’t a Southern Californian freedom fighter. But was the lead singer of The Smiths. And a highwayman. You know?’ Karl looked up at the blaring fire alarm that hung off the side of our building.
“No smoke. Must be a false alarm” he said. “I’m sure we can go back in.”
I don’t usually write poems for men. I don’t even like men, in that way. I don’t even really like Karl. He smells funny and is generally quite rude to me when we meet in the hall. He plays music at all hours and leaves his bins to rot in the hallway outside his door. But I’m fascinated by him. Karl really, really looks like Morrissey.
“You do really, really look like Morrissey” I said, keen on keeping the conversation going while we waited for the fire brigade.
“Thank you” he smiled. This is very much a compliment for someone like Karl. “Here” he produced a grubby little card from his inside pocket and handed it to me. It read; ‘Karl Vaughan, Morrissey Impersonator – Ireland’s #1 – Ideal for birthdays, weddings (is a qualified minister), funerals, whatever. Call 07817472933. Now on Myspace –’ and there was a clip-art picture of a cartoon quiff.

“Now on Myspace” he nodded proudly.
“Getting much work?”
“Bits and bobs” he replied solemnly.
“Well if any of my friends have any birthday parties coming up, I’ll pass on your number.”
“Or weddings or funerals, whatever” and he looked back up at the alarm. I looked up too and saw Beetroot peering out the window of our front room. He refuses to come down during fire alarms. He finds it demeaning. He was glaring at me now. He doesn’t like it when I talk to other people.
“Would you like a copy of the poem, Karl?”
“No. No thanks… eh?”
“Right. No thanks” and he shuffled away.



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