G: Alright? I’m George, pleasure to meet you. That’s what my mum says you’re sposed to say, that’s what my dad says I’m supposed to talk like when I meet the neighbours… all who-ha, all la di da. All canapés, red wine haze, iris veneers wed to “thanks for coming”’s, gossiping gasps, exercised laughs, and all of it just a secret farce: unwittingly broken, unconsciously faulty; towers of translucent glass ready for the dishwasher but swaying.
Nah, nah, that’s not me. I’m 18, not forty fucking two. I’m a big hope. So young, so much ahead of you George, so clever George… canapé? Flaccid tomatoes on dour bread? Nah, nah, that’s not for me.
I go to school, obviously, enjoy the learning: it’s illuminating. Me and the boys get too raucous though; find ourselves in the darker corners of minds still tainted by puberty, babyish sentimentality jimble-jumbled up with hubristic group-mentality. Some more willingly than others.
Sound of mosquito buzz just in earshot in the background.
Monday, born, early morning, for the weekend just been. Were adults, now just eggs, our bodies thrown out of bed by our heads pleading us “work hard this week”. Tuesday, Wednesday, as larvae, us on the bus flow down through the streets like lava: burning, destructive. Arms rigid, torso gently but definitely pressed upon the skin of that-one-girl-on-the-bus-that’s-permissible but then I piss it all up the wall when I bottle it, I get scared, some witty ditty ready to grace her pretty little ears then the fears of rejection manifest and all that comes out is an inaudible warble, a st-st-stammer.
Chorus: Grammar school boy! Tuck your shirt in.
G: Sorry sir
Chorus: Sit down please, page 24.
G: It’s okay because it’s Thursday and this pupil is now a pupa, encased in work, enveloped in scribbles of Leibniz, differentiation and biological observation, Wittgenstein and Kant.
Chorus: Oi! What did you just call me mate?
G: Piss off you pissant, I would riposte because I’m feeling fucking puissant, if you’ll pardon my French, cos it’s Friday, it’s my day to jape with the boys, to spread my wings as an adult now, break through that which encases and embrace, full faced, the night; I’m buzzing. Boys, like a pack of wolves, stalking the visions that the chalks of our eyes create, chasing the shadows the streetlamps mediate. Jokes of your mum, your dad, beer in hand, the faint wiff of a spliff, of hairspray and of hope for a grope or, at least, to be let into this house party. The next thing you know, you let go and fling your arms, once wings, to the beat of a drum.
Chorus and George perform a dance routine. Screams of “four to the floor, give me more” “this is a tune” “you’re shit at dancing” etc. can be heard. Song then morphs into a slow song, the chorus disintegrate and enters a Young Lady (YL) who G is left dancing with.
G: Ah yes, the romance of the evening.
Hair soft, inebriated eyes aloft, woozily trying to climb inside my pupils
YL: Teach me how to love
Teach me who you are… err?
YL: George. Oh George, hurry up and touch me there.
G: And the night ends deep in the tar of guilt. Remorse which lasts until Monday births me again, “mourning”. Nah, nah that’s not for me.