Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Pirates of the Has-Been
It’s been five months since I cashed in my cards. I turned my back on a huge raise, laughed loudly and ceremoniously burned my slacks. I emerged from Corporate Hell HQ and waved about my imaginary giant cheque like I was a pervert with some imaginary giant cock. The world was my oyster you see, but the next morning, as is with Oysters, I awoke feeling my stomach.
Still, I quickly shook it off. I had a dream you see. A talented writer, or so I’d been told, who’d only recently been commissioned to ghost write a major icons biography, only to lose the gig by submitting a below par and badly spelled 6th chapter. But still, it was a start. I figured it would pan out as follows. Collect dole, hit Bia-Bar, stagger home, find inspiration and end up in some motel throwing money in the air. As the months passed, the dream lingered on. Still have 5 months rent in the bank, no need to panic. Crack open a cold one. Then the 5 months became 4, 4 became 3 and suddenly, today, 3 became 2.
Then it hit me like a Luas. And I was a bus. And the Luas hit the bus. And the bus was me.
It was just a dream. Like the time I went hot air ballooning with David Beckham or was the man in charge with providing soap to Scarlett Johansson in the shower, it wasn’t real. ‘Real’ is shaking a cup at strangers on Camden street or taking it for the cause under a bridge on the grand canal. ‘Real’ is less buying CD’s I could have downloaded for free and more eating yesterdays newspaper from the recycle bin outside Centra. It dawned on me abruptly, like an aprupt evening time dawn. 200 euro a week does not allow one to mix in the iced glass of high society. Signing on for what used to constitute a ‘quiet night out’ does not allow the pocket to relax. Soon, it suggested, I would be getting used to particularly starchy and cardboardy bed linen, or worse, sleeping on my mothers floor.
I then broke my coffee machine by being so out of sorts that I forgot to put water in it. It wheezed and puffed away wondering why it’d been treated to such an act of ignorance and decided to sail off to electric heaven.
Without coffee, my day would drag. That temporary high used to get me through the afternoon show and the comedown would usually require a nap that would bring me past the dangerous hours of five to seven. Then, it was normally a case of putting a crease in the pants and hitting Wexford St. Now, with the cold slap of reality and a defunct coffee maker, I was left alone. Worse still, left alone with my thoughts.
“Even if you get a job, it’ll be a back month, and then some, before you get paid” I whispered to myself
“And that’s unlikely, as there are no jobs” I hummed, irritatingly
“And what’s more, you’re a grade A fuckwit, who has really let himself go. I wouldn’t hire you, and I AM you” my mind went on, rather callously.
I tinkered with the coffee machine. But the fact that several parts of it had by now been made airborne by my impatience, it was always going to be a disaster.
I looked at my calendar, and where once dancing smiley faces occupied the days, a scull and crossbones now lingered.
“That’s it” I thought, showing a remarkable level of mindlessness, despite the lack of coffee
“I’ll become a pirate!”
Seriously though, hand-jobs for a fiver anyone?