An irregular, irreverent, post-modern account of the surreal, the ordinary, and the bizarre happenings on and around the Felia lavender farm in Crete

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

NOT Captain Corelli's Mandolin

They were regathered in the nearly bare office. A tray bearing a pair of full cafetieres and a motley trio of bone china mugs dominated Lory's ascetically bare desk top. No milk. No sugar. Serena knew them all well, it was typical of her to keep things minimal, she had worked for Lory for a long while now.

"Two bloody days! That has to be the longest communal piss in the history of the novel. What happened?", Power was very obviously consumed by anger. "I haven't got time to waste you know. I'm a busy man." Lory smiled knowingly, and in his very softest voice he inquired, "... and we aren't? We have time to waste? What exactly is your point Power? Chas - the floor is yours - and you asked me to remind you about the locations".

"Thanks Gee, but first let me address our irascible Mr Power's point. I'm only guessing but I suspect that what we have just experienced is a mismatch in outputs: the author is rushing ahead while the writer, being a lazy and slightly sloppy individual, is dropping back from the pace being set. It would appear that the sheer bulk of the author's outpourings of late had frozen the writer into complete inaction - hence our existential hiatus. There might be another explanation but this one will do for now and we do seem to have the thing back on the road now so let's continue." He poured three mugs of steaming hot, strong, black, coffee and distributed them. "At least he got the coffee hot".

Charlie sipped his coffee, letting the steam rise. Lighting a cigarette he looked up and across the desk. Lory opened his top left drawer and drew forth a heavy aluminium ashtray. He passed it to Charlie. "Try not to get it on the carpet Chas - locations - tell us about locations - why Tooting and Earlsfield? Something to do with that de Bernieres fellow?" Charlie was rocked back in his chair (Herman Miller by the way) by a burst of spontaneous guffawing. "Boy do you have our author wrong! Right idea Gee, but a long way off target. No, it's a reference right enough but it's to Derek Raymond, not that ponce de Bernieres. Raymond was a real hardcore writer not some dilettante. Our author is incorporating a reading list for us in the text - in a less direct way than Johnson did in his Aren't You Rather Young - but a reading list nonetheless. Your identification of "pure Len Deighton" was wrong too - it is Raymond's factory series and "the sergeant" from that series that those early scenes redole. And the main protagonist in all of those "factory" books was himself based in and around Earlsfield. That - and of course the fact that the author himself lived in the same area for some time in the eighties."


1 comment:

  1. When it was all peanut fields, eh? Is that why there's a blue plaque on 5E?