Sunday, February 25, 2018

Fiction at the Friary -

Went to see Thomas Morris at the Friary bar today, a very enjoyable occasion, the pub is quirky, cramped, intimate, the sound isn't great, but the people running the event are  more than sound enough to make up for it.

Thomas read 3 new pieces, having enjoyed his "we don't know what we're doing" collection of short stories colleciton, I was delighted to hear new work, and his diatribe on scarf wearing in response to Colum McCann's advice to writers was pretty hilarious.  He had a touching piece about a mother & son coming to terms with a transvestite dad, and an excerpt from his Encylopedia of fictional historic rats which I think my son would have enjoyed.  There followed a very interesting Q&A where Thomas gave some interesting insights into his work and the challenges of the writer with a big successful first collection.

So they gave out pictures of rats and places as a writing prompt - I got a white lab rat and the oval office, here's what I wrote

"I hear he keeps a trained rat on his head, trained by elite navy seals, rotated and rested on a regular basis.  There's a whole swarm of them, they're kept behind the curtains when they're off but when it's show time they leap on to the big patchy surface, in under the scruff, legs and arms fit into special grooves carved into the skull and they tell him what to say:
Rocket Man better watch out.
I'm a very humble genius.
Arm the teachers.
Some days the rats obviously get distracted, they don't quite behave and they forget to tell him anything.  So the first man falls silent.  His words accurately reflecting the quietness of his head, the money worshipping slump, the yucky fixation on self.
They are the days the media calls him presidential and the rats get scolded by whoever is pulling the strings.  The master of ceremonies, a mini maestro of the planet gets cranky if the puppet comes across as normal.
His job is pure entertainment after all, distraction and delusion.  Fail to grab the headlines and you give them space to think.  Ratings, it's all about the rat things, little arms pull the levers, tiny hands twitching at power, pink eyes delerious with rage."

There followed a delightful and brief enough open mic, the crowd tending to drift away as dinner time approached, topics varied from intrusive HR enquiries, failed alcoholic dragons, to ruined weddings, bitter vengeful crazies, and nude men in drumshambo.

A most interesting afternoon.

1 comment:

The Bug said...

That is the most logical explanation for that man that I've heard yet. Well done!