6p.m. Tuesday in The Orchid Room.

August 16, 2008 at 8:24 pm | Posted in writing | 9 Comments
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Not quite standover man, elicits commission, ie payperview basis only. He’s polishing the glasses in the corner. The boss is still missing. She went walking with some old man in a grey suit and a silver cane. Downstairs backstage the pianoplayer is polishing the tops of his red and blue platform shoes on the back of his white pants, shrugging on his jacket and seeing the diamantes reflecting in the mirror. He blinks and slides on the Bootsy Collins sunglasses. His top hat is at the drycleaners but at least he still has work.

Not quite voiceover man in that the glasses purr as he polishes them and blur into rainbows reflecting the neon lit room behind. He turns and watches the pianoplayer in his ridiculous fireproof suit emerge from the downstairs and clomp over the dancefloor toward the tired old honkytonk upright. Not another one of those nights, he thinks.

F. is upstairs searching for something he left inside somewhere else and outside in the rain a limo shwooshes by with the windows wound down and Joan Armatrading singing “Willow”,


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  1. swooshes… beautiful word. I love this but I have a more pressing comment to make…

    Oh Paul, this is not just to let you but all your readers know, that I received my copy of The Puzzle Box this morning. I have rustled through (actually that’s a lie, I took painstaking care not to bend the pages) to find my favourite pieces and they are all there – of course, stupid thing to say – and I am SO excited!! This feeling of anticipation and wonderful, wonderful feeling that I am on the first step of what will be a very wide and sweeping staircase for you I’m sure, feels like a secretive honour.

    Euch, I’m gushing but if someone felt this way by simply touching my work, I would want to know and I would want it to be recorded (arrogant maybe but don’t we all require encouragement?), so here it is.

    Your writing surpasses so much… breaks rules and makes some… and your conviction to the written word, dreams and art is admirable.

    Excuse me, I have other worlds to read between the covers of a little yellow book…

    Do you want me to do a full critique when I’ve finished? haha… you know how vicious I can be with my critiques…
    Thankyou, Mary. That is a gushing one. Yes please, a complete critique would be cool, especially since the Mss for the cheaper paperback is nearly ready. Any typo and layout issues would be good. Thanks again,

  2. I love it. Great take on Saudade. Not that I knew anything about Saudade until now. Once again, you have expanded my mind.
    P.S. After reading Mary’s flowing words of praise, how could I resist the temptation? Short answer. Couldn’t. Think I’ll sit by the mailbox and wait.
    Cheers, Brad. Let me know what you think. I hope you enjoy.

  3. gingatao you are an inspiration from the reflection of neon to the wide open sky
    Thanks, Tipota,

  4. well i can’t say it anymore thoughtfully than tipota so i’ll just give a “hear, hear!” i especially loved the second paragraph and how i go into one room and go out from another.
    Hear, hear, Mrs Ott, thankyou,

  5. on the back of his white pants,

    something utterly exotic and noble about that! 😉

    three card, indeed!
    Cool, thanks Sumedh. I think three card and Suadade are in the limo cruising past The Orchid Room as in the previous piece, The Tipota Incident. These two pieces happen at the same time. Or something. Hopefully the tags will work to connect all these pieces up for the second book,

  6. The shifting in the text was refreshing. I loved the polishing bits everything seems so perfect!
    Thankyou, that is a lovely polished comment, too,

  7. the sunset and the rain, hand in hand, polishing the whole scene with a piece of cotton rainbow and a spray called Clear Memories of Po:)

    Loved it, 6 times!
    6 times! Coo, Thankyou, Hayat,

  8. ooooo…I love reading your posts. Makes me all warmy and tingly inside.

    Or maybe that’s the beer.

    Oh well. 🙂
    Oo, beer, you lucky thing. Warmy and tingly inside is a good thing I hope,

  9. hellooo when did you become naked hairy man, mr bean? when did you take off the ridiculous fireproof suit?

    my faves are the last 2 lines of the 1st graph…
    Oh, Friday night sometime it was, I don’t really remember but I am fully clothed again now so you can take your hands from your eyes, Ms Predator,

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