Today may turn out to be portentous. It started normal enough: The girlfriend had made claw marks all the way down the stairwell and then bit a chunk out of the corner of the sideboard; Mina came in with a pile of someone else’s washing, most of which I confiscated as it was too revealing (I try to maintain a degree of decorum in this household!) and the cat was seen stalking a police car down the road – if I find bits of uniform scattered about the house he is in trouble! However after I had finished my daily chores and was ambling up the garden path to my studio as usual a large black shape swooped low overhead. It appeared to land in one of the gardens backing on our row but five or six houses down. I do hope someone strange isn’t moving in.
I have another tale of woe and considerable irritation to share. As I have mentioned previously we have four hands stuck – I thought tightly – to the dining table legs. The rather unfortunate change happened immediately after the girlfriend served her “experimental” goulash: I am not quite sure in what way she experimented but I have subsequently found it a jolly good weedkiller although as a negative when I accidentally stuck my tie in the bowl it was transformed into a kind of chrysalis and a jet black butterfly crawled out! Anyway, immediately after that meal and during ever meal since (except the time she set the table on fire with her chilli soup) one of the hands becomes detached and then grabs hold of your ankle. The girlfriend kicks it off and then stamps on it but I tend to persuade it off by offering it a few mealworms which I had previously kept in a jar by the front door to feed a giant centipede that had taken up residence in the umbrella stand.
The girlfriend has been much nicer to me recently – I am not sure why. There hasn’t been as many temper tantrums, even when I made a twenty foot deep crater in the front lawn – I was playing an air guitar when flying (if you can’t play it in the air when can you play it!) and forgot to brake when landing. I had thought about leaving it alone as a garden feature but the paper boys keep falling in and they shout so loudly they are keeping people awake at night. I can’t remember the last time the girlfriend attacked me with an acetylene torch or a pneumatic drill (it may be when I called her home made macaroni cheese mummified salamander spawn – I actually meant it as a compliment) and I have only found an axe in my head twice this week – I suppose I had better do something about my snoring (although I only sleep an hour a night for heaven’s sake). She does still push me down the stairs quite frequently and occasionally in front of speeding lorries but I am sure she is only being playful! All in all I reckon things might be looking up.
I went into my studio for the first time in weeks. The studio is actually in the outhouse at the bottom of the garden as the girlfriend doesn’t like the smell of paint. It used to be the lavatory and I find the pan a good place to keep my brushes (as well as sandwiches and a bottle of drink). There are usually large spiders residing inside the building and I always have to push past them to get in: the last one was almost as big as a Labrador dog and bit a hole in my top. However I was still very surprised when entering the building this morning to find a pair of bare legs dangling through the ceiling. I immediately thought of the hands in the dining room but these can’t possibly be connected; especially as the legs are female and the hands look male. I was just thinking to myself that it might be handy to stick drying paintings between the toes when the legs started to dance – they were still moving when I packed up for the day. There must be a lot of space in the roof of the outhouse as there is a trap door and pull down ladder. I have occasionally heard whispering up there when working but hadn’t thought much more about it.
Today was a holiday in the UK and I spent it in the garden again – I am going to forget what a paintbrush is actually for! Consequently still no writing but as another change here are a couple of Manfred’s drawings instead of the customary paintings. I am not sure how many he has done – many aren’t very good.
I have been out in the garden all week so no writing has been done. Consequently here is the second of Manfred Wing’s portraits of Gerald Shepherd to fill the gap.
In reality I don’t turn into a vampire at night: that’s my wife – I turn into the werewolf! (please google Homage To The Wolfman or Self Portrait As The Wolfman to see the pictorial proof). There is no cellar so no Mina; however I know I will find her one day!
The ferocious cat does exist, although it is a she rather than a he – she hasn’t eaten the postman yet as we have managed to keep them apart!