Monthly Archives: July 2009

Porn, Piss and Pieces…

I really need to write a blog, but the muse isn’t biting. This was my third attempt tonight after “My parents, the pod people” and “Grazed Anatomy” about writing conventions that make humans do things they never would, and inspired by an episode on Grey’s Anatomy. Both good blogs, but I couldn’t get past half a page of each. So, stuck as I am, I shall do what I always do, I’ll give you something out my archive of unpublished work. Inspired by Karl’s comment on my bugbear, “bad porn”. I thought I’d find something to celebrate the theme.

Now here is a REALLY BIG WARNING. Especially for those delicate, delicate fangirls that can’t seem to stay away from me and mine, the following story fragment was written for an extreme fetishist publisher. It was going to be a novel (novella really, as porn doesn’t come in big sizes) called “Diaries of an Extremist”, about a ‘real’ dominatrix – i.e. someone who actually dominates rather than a whore who charges men to dominate them exactly the way they like. This was going to be a story where the men actually got treated like trash. I started it on the date you see here (it was going to be date-headed – hence the “Diaries”) and I got exactly two pages done before I decided I really did not want to go here. It still felt too much like serving up man-pleasing porn to me. I wrote another version of it that I might let you see next blog, if I’m still stuck then. At least that one got finished into a short story.

However, THAT REALLY BIG WARNING AGAIN – THIS STORY IS VERY SEXUALLY EXPLICIT. By which I mean explicit with the “very” part being as in not ‘nice’. You have been warned. DO NOT READ THIS IF PORN OFFENDS YOU, YOU DUMB BASTARD.

I’d be more than happy to see someone finish it, but only if you publish it through here. No putting it elsewhere on the net. This fragment is still copyright, such as it is, and so it stays here, okay? But please, any would-be porn writers out there who fancy finishing it, feel free. Maybe if you’re really good I’ll give you a contract – we’ve got two new books in the pipeline, you know; you could be number three. Short story works for me; it doesn’t have to be a novel/la.

Regardless, enjoy………

23rd June 1997

Went to the Unemployment Benefit Office today. What used to be the DHSS. They want me to go back to work. I don’t. Little shit behind the desk thought he was something. About the same height as me, dark hair, back in a pony-tail, ear pierced. I can just see him after work, with his black jeans and his Motley Crue T shirt, pissed off that he doesn’t get to live the Rock ‘n Roll lifestyle and determined to take it out on everyone else. Namely me. Probably thinks piercing his ear is the height of Bourgeois rebellion.

Went back at ten to four, just before it closes, and sat outside in Daisy Street in the van. He came out at three minutes past four, practically on the button. I bet you could time how long the little shit took to get out of there each day to the second.

Started the van up and followed him down the road that goes past the Glenrothes Hotel – this is even better than I imagined. He’s going to take the path that runs round the back of the St Vincent de Paul High School.

I park the van quick, don’t bother to lock it, and am down there after him.

It was too easy. He was too fucking macho to turn round to see who was behind him. Just slid the pad over his mouth and nose, couple of struggles and he’s out. He feels good too.

Back at the house, I reverse up to the door and drag him out and into the house. I enjoy bumping the little cunt down the stairs to the basement.

I get his clothes off and get him on the potty stool. Once he’s secured I’ve got time to admire my catch.

Hardly a scrap of hair on him, dead white skin, nipples that look like cigarette burns and a little silky nest at his groin that looks like the scrap of fur you might find on a kitten. Really cute. His dick’s brown and looks hardly developed yet. Undressed he’s even more of an upstart kid than his cheap grey suit and white shirt would let on.

I slap his face a couple of times. He groans. I catch hold of his cock and pull it up slowly until the skin is stretched taut and pulling away from his body – just enough to make him uncomfortable. He groans again and I pull it some more. His eyelids flicker.

“Come on,” I say. “All good boys find favour… providing they wake up pronto.” And I give his dick an uncomfortable tug.

He groans again but does not surface any further. More drastic action is called for.

I straddle the stool and stand above his face. I pull my knickers to one side. “Come on,” I say, looking down at him. “You don’t want me to throw you in the shower, do you?”

He doesn’t even bother to answer that, so I let him have it. I lift one leg so that I don’t soil my clothes and squat over his face. My urine jets in his face briefly and forcefully, like a squirted Squeezy bottle. He splutters and coughs, trying to jerk his head away. He gets an ear full of piss. “Good boy…” I say, and yank his face back. “Now wake up.” And I slap him hard enough to wake the dead.

His eyes are open now and struggling to focus. I move back off him. He’s blinking up at me. I smile. “Welcome to my Paradise. I’m Belinda and I’m your tour guide for today.” I can see him looking at my blank rubber face and trying to work out where the fuck he is. No go. He hasn’t a clue. “Nice dick,” I say, by way of conversation. And it is, strangely, despite being on the small side. It’s cute, like I said.

I pull his head upright by the pony-tail. He cries out and tries to lift his hands – then discovers he’s tied down, or up, if you prefer.

I smile again. “Oh dear, looks like you’re a little tied up today… Derek.”

I can see how confused he is at me knowing his name. I can see him trying to work out where he is, what’s happening, why he’s covered in piss.

I pull the elastic from his hair nice and roughly, bringing out a few long dark hairs with it and making him grunt with pain. His head drops back as I let go and this long silky black hair fans out over his shoulders. I can visualize him at Jilly’s Rock world every Saturday, damaging his cerebral cortex and whiplashing his neck as he shakes it around to Kiss, or maybe Guns & Roses.

“Nice hair,” I demur. God, I must like this one – two compliments in as many minutes. He says, “Where am I?”

I laugh; I can’t help it.

“I told you, in Paradise. And I’m here to make my every dream come true. You’re here to help.”

I can see him struggling with that one too. Shame. Don’t want him to wrinkle with concentrating too hard. I say, “Don’t faze yourself. You’re here to do what I say and be enjoyed. I’m sure you can manage that. I have faith in you. I knew you were trustworthy the first moment I saw you.”

“Who are you?” he says, as if I would tell him. Does he think I wear this mask for fun? Thinks it’s my kick?

I hunker down and slide one finger up the spread cheeks of his arse. I see his eyes widen in disbelief. It goes up quite easy, I think because he’s still drugged maybe.

He says something like, “Grunk…” and squirms in the awkward potty hole. Of course he can’t lift himself and all it does is tense his muscles round my finger, giving which one of us the extra thrill I’m not sure, so I say, “Is that nice? Does ‘oo like that then?” And wriggle my finger around right up to the knuckle in case he’s enjoying it. More, if he isn’t.

He says again, “Who are you?” still trying to lift his little butt up out of the big nasty hole it’s in while I push my shiny finger in and out, massaging his nice tight little sphincter.

“I told you, Belinda, your guide for today. You know you’ll only hurt yourself doing that. Why don’t you sit still and enjoy it?”

“Let me go,” he says.

I’ve always wondered at that one. I mean, considered it weird. What’s it about? Here they are waking up out of drug heaven, in some alien basement, suspended in a curious coffee table-sized contraption, butt first down a hole, ankles and hands manacled, arse spread to the woman in black, and they say, Let me go.

Of course you’re going to say, ‘Sorry, my mistake,’ unfasten it and help them out.

“No,” I say, curious to see if he attempts to take it further. But he doesn’t. Instead he says, “What am I doing here?”

“Well, let’s say you’re something in the nature of a redcoat, minus the coat. You’re here to provide entertainment.”

“What d’you mean?”

“What do you think I mean?” And I smile again. I’m quite enjoying this.

“Who are you?”

I slap him, because I’m tired of answering that one and I could see this going on all day. He looks at me in angry surprise. I see his mouth snarl, wonder if he’s stupid enough to do it, but he isn’t. He doesn’t say anything.

“Good boy,” I say. “I see you’re learning already.”


Twilight of the Damned

I thought I would never see another blockbuster as bad as The Dark Knight. Hah! That was only because I hadn’t seen Twilight.

Okay, I knew I would probably see as bad, maybe even worse. After all, the law of diminishing returns defines Hollywood, but Christ, it’s truly hard to see how they pull these stunts of screaming mediocrity off. Seriously.

Just take twenty seconds out your day to do this fun exercise. Trust me, you’ve nothing to do that can’t wait. Right, think about the budget of Twilight. I have no idea what it was, but I’m reckoning nothing under 30 million or so – right? THIRTY MILLION. Okay, then we have the talent. I don’t care whether you like any of Catherine Hardwicke’s other movies or not, if she was inept they wouldn’t let her loose with that kind of budget. Hollywood might be a lot of things but they understand money and how to make it (after all, they made it on Twilight and The Dark Knight, didn’t they?), so they’re not going to throw money away on anyone talentless or inept. So, she has to have basic skills. Then there’s the script writer, the acting talent, the cinematographers, the costume designers, the caterers, the film labs, the special effects team: all money, all costs, and all basically assumed to be proficient. In view of this, what then is the alchemy that turns gold (the money-making potential of a film spin-off) into dross?

Like The Dark Knight, I really wanted to see Twilight. I’d had an almost Joaquin Phoenix moment when I first saw Robert Pattinson (when I first saw JP coming out of the caravan in the Gladiator trailer my heart speeded up, my stomach dropped, and the hairs came up on the back of my neck – I’m sure blood also rushed places that are too rude to mention). My Pattinson moment was a ‘not quite, but almost’. Good enough for me. There was also muted colouring, vampires, scary vampires, forbidden love and more good looking boys. What’s not to love? I was on their side. They’d already won me over. I wanted to be awed.

I had never read the book and, like The Dark Knight, I didn’t give a fuck if fangirls in their droves were clustering round it like flies round shit. I don’t go to fan sites, I don’t see fan talk. In fact, unlike The Dark Knight, I had seen precious little twaddle because Twilight hadn’t had a tragic death to push it into the tabloids. So I wasn’t even suffering from the Tim Burton Effect. (Burton once said films can be harmed by too much hype because if it looks as if the wrong type of [or too many] people like the film those that might have enjoyed it assume it isn’t for them.) So when Twilight came through the post to me earlier than I expected I had no fears or prejudices; I couldn’t wait to see it.

On the night, I watched the first fifteen minutes thinking, ‘Story will kick in soon’. Then I watched the next fifteen minutes thinking, ‘Is the story kicking in soon?’ Then I watched the next fifteen minutes thinking, ‘Is it me or does this not actually have a story? Maybe it will pick up when the villains appear.’ That in itself was worrying. Why hadn’t the villains appeared forty-five minutes into the film? (Not sure if it is precisely forty-five mins, ok? I was watching it, not studying it.)

The villains did indeed appear eventually. Sort of. But first we had to have a baseball match in a lightning storm. No, I have no idea why. Although we were told that this was important somehow and it was the only way they could do something, ‘this’ – whatever ‘this’ was – it never was explained. For some utterly incomprehensible reason they stopped the plot, such as it was, and had baseball, then, finally, we get the bad guys. Thank God, now maybe the film will have a point, or a story, or interest, or something. Anything, please God.

Nope. Nope, nope and nope. Although we had the excellent Cam Gigandet, whose work, even in soap operas, is always thoroughly enjoyable, there was no excitement. Nil. None. Nada. Unbelievable. Fucking unbelievable.

I will not be spoilering Twilight to tell you it’s the story of a vampire, the delicious Edward Cullen, who falls in love with the completely unmemorable heroine (I can’t remember either the actress or her character) and…. Well, and nothing basically. That’s it. Sum total. They’re supposed to be star-crossed lovers, but other than Cullen walking out on meeting her at the very beginning because he can’t bear to be near her, there’s no feeling of this. And that particular soul struggle lasts all of four minutes. Assumably he sends off for some Be Near Humans Chewing Gum, chews on that and his addiction is promptly resolved.

His ‘conflict’ had the angst factor of a visit to Kwik-Fit Exhausts. In fact, I’d say a trip to the exhaust-fitting chaps would be more stressing: will they put it on right? Will my car blow up? Will I die of carbon Monoxide poisoning? Will they overcharge me? These are all legitimate worries. There were no worries in Twilight. He wanted her; he had her. They were not friends; then they were friends. His family judged her; oops, they’re not fazed at all, although she is allegedly a threat to them. I would defy anyone to find a more harmonious and conflict-free film outside a Christian bible group’s Sunday outing on home movies.

Bland, bland and more bland. Nothing happened, all the conflicts were resolved literally within minutes of their introduction. It was as if Hollywood had decided children could only take 3.7 minutes of uncertainty before they got stressed or lost interest or started throwing sweets, and Hardwicke had been told to stick religiously to clock-based plotting. Conflict… not too much conflict… hold it, HOLD it… resolution. And repeat…………..

The heroine – a brunette, I remember that – had no character at all, other than annoying body tics. She would shake her head, roll her eyes, do arm flapping. It was like watching Ally McBeal without the jokes. Cullen was reduced to albeit very effective smouldering glances and overly red pouty lips. But her corresponding emotional range of sullen to petulant gave him nothing to work off, and the poor actress seemed to keep repeating herself because there was simply nothing else for her to do. She had the baffling tail-chasing challenge of being Girl In Love With Unattainable Vampire Who Is Completely Attainable Throughout Entire Movie. You try acting that one. No wonder she was ticcing and twitching.

And then there was the vampire ‘dad’. Cullen Senior was the most bizarre thing I’ve seen in a film in a long time. Played by an excellent actor, Peter Facinelli, who is genuinely weird-looking, he was shoved on-stage like some strange creature from Japanese theatre. Actually, not even that. He was more like a not very comfortable rock singer playing starring role in a 1980’s rock video that some twenty-year-old director thought would be cool if he dressed up as “Some guy from, like, Japanese Theatre, man. Awesome.”

I accept, because I want to be kind, that it was ‘explained’ that Edward was ‘adopted’ – yeah, by a boy four years older than him, who appears to be in full face paint and yet no-one notices. The film’s set in what appears to be some rural American backwater and yet no-one has noticed a family where the dad is two weeks older than his ‘family’ (who look like a Dolce & Gabbana ‘cast’ who’ve lost the photo-shoot location and are waiting for someone with an IQ or a clipboard – either will do – to come along and save them) and who wears clown-white, mascara and bright red lipstick to work as a doctor. I’ve never been to America, but even in American films, which show America in the best possible light, nobody would expect an audience to believe ordinary Americans would take the Cullen family at face value. They’d be reported to the authorities so fast they’d be on the first deportation boat to Cuba, or hauled up as “peedeopheels”.

I could have forgiven this screaming anomaly had the vampire ‘family’ been at all threatening, or interesting, or in any way enhanced the film, but all they did was feature as decorative if anorexic wallpaper. They always seemed to be in shot in the background of the school canteen. In fact, it felt as if the whole film took place in the canteen. Or in trees. Canteen. Trees. Canteen. Trees. We’re vampires. We only drink blood. We’re in a fucking canteen. For that matter why are they up trees? Bats don’t even live in trees, if this is supposed to be some kind of cool naturalist allegory. Why trees?

And then there were the odd moments of comic relief: the unexplained and pointless baseball, the running up the mountain. Actually, I can’t get past the Mack Sennett speeded-up, comic running up a mountain while giving her a piggy-back. Who the hell thought that was frightening/sexy/entertaining/awe-inspiring? He ran up a mountain. With her on his back. It was like some bizarre scene out of the obligatory school picnic sequence in a family-friendly Robin Williams comedy. A school bully should have arrived and attempted to steal someone’s lunch money, and then Edward would run up the mountain and the bully would be left comically gaping, until his (fat) Mom arrived and he comically tried to explain. What a laff riot. Or maybe it’s more Eddie Murphy’s gig. In white face.

All of this is very fine and dandy. And all of it would have been entirely forgivable if it had been a remotely engaging movie. Independence Day is one of my favourite popcorn movies. It is jingoistic, ridiculous nonsense. BUT, it is fast, entertaining, full of likeable characters racing against odds in an emotionally-charged story. It’s an incredibly expensive and very well-made B movie. It doesn’t aspire to be anything else. It knows its limitations and plays on them to great effect. It gets it all right. It takes every cliché and pulls it off with great aplomb and style. Its characters have character. Its plot moves. What it doesn’t do is deliver up story archetypes (as in, the vampire) and proceed to completely castrate them. It doesn’t take the plot (like forbidden love) and forget to include the forbidden part – or the love. It takes conflict and then puts another conflict within that conflict, within another conflict, running several threads simultaneously. It doesn’t take potential conflicts (like forbidden love, bad versus good, human versus ‘other’ – I could go on all day) and then completely forget to deliver an actual conflict, providing us instead with tree-jumping, and staring – lots of staring.

Perhaps the very worst crime that Twilight committed – other than a criminal waste of talent and money – is that for a story supposedly centring on forbidden love and unappeasable misallied lusts (the lust for intimacy versus the lust for satiation and self-indulgence) is that there was absolutely no sense of erotic tension. Other than one tiny scene on a bed there was no indication that he or she were tormented or restraining themselves in any way. I’m guessing that the film-makers desire for a low certificate led partly to its joyless, lustless, dry as a bone taste, but did they really need to stifle it entirely? I’ve seen episodes of Smallville, which arguably has a lower age demographic, where the erotic tension between Lex and Clark is palpable – and that’s sub-rosa, not the main thrust and parry of the plot.

What happened? How could so much talent and money be so badly mishandled?

But maybe that’s not the question I should be asking. Maybe I should be asking why does Hollywood think it’s okay to do this? And they do. The bottom line is always money. If Twilight makes a lot of money – and I’m sure it did – then they got it right. End of discussion.

But they didn’t get it right. Twilight is junk. Complete crap. And it’s not often you’ll hear me say that. I like to be kind to creative output. If I know something is going to be crap (Mills & Boon romances, reality TV, tabloid newspapers) I don’t read/watch them. I don’t belong to the school of watch junk then criticise it. It’s the last resort of morons. If it’s so bad, why the hell are you watching it? Unsurprisingly, because that way they get to masturbate their own egos by holding forth on something so uncomplicated an ape could do it. And do it better. It’s easy to be a critic of crap. I don’t do it. If I do watch something that I know is lowest common denominator ‘entertainment’ I don’t then give it bad reviews, or go on fan sites to scream about it. Why would I do that? I thought it would be bad. It was. Nobody made me watch it and I’m certainly not going to moan about my own stupidity. But this? This is different. I expect something of Twilight. Like I expected something of The Dark Knight. There is no excuse when you have the best acting talent and professional directors and scriptwriters – which Twilight had – to turn out dreck. So why?

Because it makes money. We’ve already said that. And I’m sure it’s true; like I keep saying, both Dark Knight and Twilight made oodles of money. But good stuff makes money too, so is it really a valid excuse? In fact, Dark Knight and Twilight were guaranteed to make money. So much money and promotion was invested in them they literally couldn’t fail – other than through natural disaster, like a tsunami washing away the entire Western seaboard of America on opening night, perhaps.

Maybe that’s the answer. Maybe when there’s so much money riding on films like this human terror kicks in and the fear of failure makes every move ultra-guarded. “We can’t do this because the X fans won’t like it, or do that because the Y believers are watching our every move. And don’t forget that time the Z backlash group had last summer’s blockbuster pulled.” Maybe at the very bottom line is a fictitious Ultrafan – the ultimate god of Hollywood. Maybe the fanboy really does run the show. Maybe at heart every Hollywood accountant and executive fears every moron on IMDB baying for their blood. Maybe Twilight is nothing more than the end product of playground bullying, and Twilight and The Dark Knight are exactly what the fans deserve. These movies are the ultimate compliment, and like all compliments from strangers who are currying favour, they are false, fawning and ultimately worthless. Twilight is Hollywood’s gift to Stephenie Meyer’s fans. It’s crap – but they’re loving it. Fuck, it surely doesn’t get any more karmic than that.

Yet another blog referencing Jodie….

Dream Jodie and Tony-Paul. I had a dream about them, which felt, and feels, terribly significant, like I should learn something from it, see something in it, but I don’t know what.

Dream Jodie wasn’t like the real Jodie. She couldn’t be, since I don’t actually know the real Jodie, and yet she somehow was.

For those of you who are not regular readers, Jodie is one of my seven and a half fans – or, to be more accurate, DANNY’s seven and a half fans.

In the dream, Dream Jodie was meant to be the Real Jodie, and I had only just met her for the first time. So far, so realistic. We appeared to be meeting up in Sheffield, Real Jodie’s hometown. Also realistic. She looked rather like my old childhood friend, Maureen Cannon, and was a rather doll-like curvy blonde in black clothes. Not too far off either.

We met up in a pub or a nightclub, early-ish in the day (around five in the evening, I’d guess) and we appeared to be getting on like a house on fire. Also, not a million miles from unlikely. I’ve always thought I might like Jodie, or at least she wouldn’t annoy the hell out me. (Think House and Wilson, although I’m not sure which of us would be playing House; it might be more a Battle of the Sarcasms. No, I’m nastier than she is. I get to play House.)

Then Tony-Paul arrived, and it all went pear-shaped. Tony-Paul was Dream Jodie’s new boyfriend, and he didn’t like me. To be more accurate, Tony-Paul didn’t trust me. If asked to guess, I’d say Tony-Paul thought I was too smart for my own good and probably too big for my boots. Tony-Paul didn’t like my ‘influence’ over Dream Jodie and he didn’t like that she knew me. His Jodie was a different girl, one who went out Saturday nights, spent her time with him in pubs like this one, and he had no time for her reading books let alone being involved with the author of one.

Tony-Paul was a thorn in my ointment. I knew Tony-Paul was trouble as soon as I saw his odd little onion-shaped head. I don’t know if this was some odd quirk of my subconscious, since I remember Jill (Real Jodie’s real sister) and her having a teasing match over Jill’s taste in runty men. Or whether it’s because I remember Jodie herself confessing to a liking for Michael Sheen, an onion-headed runt if ever I saw one, but Tony-Paul looked kind of weird. (Just realised, reading this through, that Sheen played Tony [Blair]; this can’t be a coincidence.)

He was short, for a start. Not more than five-eight, I’d say, and he had the aforementioned onion head – this odd wide forehead and a short little face with a pointy chin and designer facial hair. He was also bald. Not aged-relative bald, but trendy shaved-head bald. I could see a slight dark shadow – but I could also see his hairline was receding. There was probably a little genuine bald spot at the crown. Whatever trendification he tried – man was bald. He was also dark-skinned, Asian-looking, but third generation Asian: no foreign accent, no trace of Indian mannerisms, dress or culture – just that dark skin and eyebrows.

And, of course, he was called Tony-Paul. Not literally, but I seem to have kept changing his name. Sometimes Tony, sometimes Paul. But those names are so plebeian, so ordinary, so nothing. They were a statement of Tony-Paul’s albeit rather sinister mediocrity. This is probably meaningless to most of you, but he was exactly like a rather unpleasant potential villain in DANNY itself; some character John would fall over in a pub, some weirdo who would foolishly threaten him.

As he was ‘threatening’ me.

See what I mean? Odd. Significant. Meaningless.

I had plans for Dream Jodie. Not nasty sexual corrupt ones (why would you think that?), but something to do with DANNY itself. Again, not odd, we’ve often approached Jodie about various projects, most of which have turned to dust, but why this, why now? I have no projects planned. Not even for me, let alone Jodie.

But the oddest thing of all was, I was asking her to collaborate on a book (novel? I think so.) Right before Tony-Paul brought his unwanted little onion head into the picture I was saying to Jodie, “So you’d like to collaborate on this book then?” feeling that sense of excitement, that peculiar bubble of recognition and hope that all too rarely happens when you meet a kindred sprit.

I am very, very vulnerable to kindred spirits. I expect most people to, at best, not understand me, or anything I do, and, at worst, to take an instant dislike to me. I say, entirely without self-pity, I assure you, that I have time without number threatened people on first meeting, and this when I am lying, cheating and manipulating myself into their good graces (I mean, they feel threatened, I haven’t pulled a shiv on them). By pretending to be normal, ordinary and non-threatening. By pretending to care about their annoying little lives. By being sweet, kind, concerned, friendly – when I am none of these things.

Maybe that’s why they don’t like me. Not because I’m not a good actress, I am entirely plausible – I sign on every fortnight and convince the nice lady on my desk that I care about getting a job when nothing is further from the truth – but because they think, “She’s not like me, I know it. I feel it. What the hell is she? What is she about? Is she going to expect something of me? Is she going to wake me up, jolt me out my comfortable rut? I don’t like the look of her one little bit.”

I agree with them. I’m on their side. It’s all true. I don’t trust me either. Never have.

Dream Jodie and I had no such problem. There was no hesitation in our discussion. We were of an accord. Had we been opposite sexes, Jane Austen would have married us off post haste and described our meeting of minds as “A most felicitous occasion for happiness”.

But then there was Tony-Paul. My fly. In my ointment. How I hated him. How he sunk my gut into a pit of frustration and loss. There went Jodie, there went my book. And for nothing. A mediocrity. An illusion.

Dream Jodie was weak. I knew it. She was hoist on her own petard of obsession. And the worst of it was, I knew he wasn’t worth it. I had seen a million women make this mistake before her, and will see another million do it again before I die. Unless I am run over by a bus tomorrow.

Dream Jodie wasn’t in love with Tony-Paul, it wasn’t that. Dream Jodie was in this worst place, she revered him. He was Macho Man, a bloke’s bloke, a fake. There’s a type of man who plays at strong and silent, no emotions, no crying. He has mates, he drinks beer, he doesn’t say much, he scowls a lot, but none of it’s real. In actuality, he needs women. For everything. He needs one to cook, to clean, to wake him up, to make his tea, to wash his clothes, to pick his clothes, to buy his clothes, to show off at weddings, to meet his mum (who he sees regularly and obeys in all things). Macho Man cannot do anything for himself, and that includes feeling any emotions, or knowing who or what the hell he is, or needs. You see, women have always done all that for him.

But eventually Macho Man needs sex, regular sex, and he can’t go to mum for that, so he needs a girlfriend. But she has to buy into the whole façade of who he is. She has to pay lip service to his macho, his maleness, his toughness, while all the time ministering to his every need. She is his real-time CGI. She’s responsible for making sure the Holodeck that is his life is never switched off, and we don’t all see the little needy boy-child behind the curtain.

Such was Jodie’s trap. She ‘believed in’ Tony-Paul. She had agreed implicitly to keep this façade of his running – and there was no way me and her collaborating on a book was going to mesh into Tony-Paul’s Virtual Life.

All of this was very interesting, if unoriginal, but the really interesting question for me was, is, why the fuck was I dreaming it?

I have no intention of ‘collaborating’ with anyone, on anything, never mind a book. As far as I know (I may be wrong) Jodie has no ideas of writing a book. I likewise have no idea if she has a boyfriend, if he has an onion-head, or if she is obsessed by him. Although that one wouldn’t surprise me since obsession is what she does best, and she wears it proudly, bless her. From what little I do know of Jodie, I wouldn’t like to stick my neck out and say she’d never buy into obsessive love for a narcissist, but I do suspect that she couldn’t keep the façade thing going for long. If she was into denial and Living in His Delusion, a disorder which is beloved of many women, nothing about DANNY would appeal to her. It’s a dangerous, dangerous and stupid thing to do, but I’m going to say Jodie just wouldn’t fall for Tony-Paul. Not for long. And she wouldn’t sell anyone out for the ‘love’ of him.

So why in the name of all that’s holy did I choose to star her in my dream, put all my faith in her, only to make her abandon me to Tony-Paul?

So pressing did this dream feel I kept finding it popping into my head all day, rather like my house had been burgled and I could sense something was wrong but I hadn’t quite spotted it yet. It seemed to walk along behind me going, “Yoo-hoo! Over here!” So fed up did I get with this constant attention-seeking I actually told Max about it and asked him what he thought it meant.

We tossed it around and wondered the obvious: was it because I’d given DANNY up and I feared Jodie would just abandon the book for pastures new? Was Tony-Paul just my subconscious’ way of saying “Jodie, your ‘perfect’ embodiment of A Fan, will simply move onto a new macho man, replacing the authenticity of John and Danny with Tony-Paul, the onion-headed fake that passes for Alpha males in most stories”? Possibly. Probably. Sounds highly plausible to me.

It would be stupid and disingenuous of me to say, But why would I care? Of course I would care. Nobody writes a book to be forgotten. Not me, not nobody. But I can’t help feel there’s more to it than this. I agree absolutely that that’s a perfect explanation. My life is in turmoil right now. I’ve lost my ‘identity’. I no longer call myself a writer, something I’ve done for as long as I can remember. As I’m no longer supplying ‘product’, my tiny fan club has no reason to remember me, or my work. I’m stripping away more and more of my fragile life every day and leaving nothing to replace it. That would be enough to push anyone into dreams of Tony-Paul and abandonment, but not me.

I think this is the point. Sure I’d dream it. I did. Sure Jodie makes the perfect dream metaphor for a fear of losing my fans. (I feel I should apologise for that, but know somehow Jodie will love the idea of being a dream metaphor, so I won’t, although I do feel she is owed an apology for being used as someone fickle and stupid enough to fall for an onion-headed impostor, a cheap sinkhole estate lothario who thinks a game of pool is foreplay and simmering thuggish jealousy fools anyone into thinking he cares.) But that’s not only too simple, it’s just wrong.

There’s something more here, something it’s trying to tell me, and I’m missing it entirely. That’s why I’m writing a blog about a week old dream, because it just won’t leave me alone and I don’t get it. It’s like a film with a subplot I can’t quite grasp, a relationship that doesn’t make sense. It’s the piece of apple skin lodged in your throat, the fibre of pork caught between your teeth, the hang-nail: tiny, infuriating, and always there.

I even got to the stage of wondering if I’d dreamt something predictive. I do this occasionally, usually about really weird pointless things that are completely unhelpful as premonitions. That’s what made this one a possible; it was mad enough. Had Jodie just fallen in love with a Tony or a Paul, or even, God forbid, a Tony-Paul? Had she just met someone like him? Was she…. Oh God, no, Lassie… in danger? This would be exactly the kind of stupid prediction dream I’d have, one that was no earthly use to anyone. I actually – yes actually – contemplated e-mailing her and asking if the dream meant anything to her, but fortunately realised how barking that would sound. Yes, Stone’s gone bankrupt and gone mad simultaneously, it will be death by prescription drug overdose next.

So, if there are any dream analysts out there who think they can see what I’m missing – let me know. I, for one, am no closer to any deeper understanding of it at all. If it has a secret message for me I can’t find it. Maybe I need to read it the old-fashioned way, by creating a novel out of it. Worked for me before, although it did take me four volumes, and I never did find an answer to that one either. Maybe this one would be more successful. With a movie.

I reckon Rachel Weisz for Jodie and Michael Sheen for Tony-Paul – what d’you think? Now if I can just arrange my suicide for right before the premiere. Wait, there’s got to be a masseur. Anyone know a good masseur………..?