So, you know how sometimes you decide to stay in on a Saturday night to “get some writing done” and stuff? Well, I do, sometimes. Only the thing is, whenever I decide to stay in on a Saturday night to get some writing done, I never actually end up writing anything. I end up drinking a litre of red wine and watching Princess Diana tribute videos on Youtube. Actually, that’s not even true. Sometimes I drink expensive red wine (mind you, for me, anything over the €7 mark is officially expensive) and watch my favourite proposal scenes from various Jane Austen film and/or TV adaptations.
And the sad thing is, I think, actually, if I’m really honest, this makes me feel happier than going out drinking in bars or even – heaven fucking forbid – forcing myself to go to a club or something. The truth is, I don’t like bars much, and I really fucking hate discos and clubs and things. But somehow, I’ve brainwashed myself into thinking I owe it to the world to go out and drink alcohol in a bar on a Saturday night. And I don’t even know why. I mean, why do we do it? To save the Western economy, perhaps? We’re definitely not doing it because we’re enjoying ourselves. Well, I’m definitely not enjoying myself. When you go to a bar it’s really loud and hard to concentrate and you have to make small talk and I’m really bad at small talk. I always bring rape and abortion into it.
So, it’s Saturday night and a German boy phones my mobile. I’ve got my Festnetz switched off.
“I’m in Neukölln,” he says. “Where are you?”
“I’m at home,” I say.
“Come out for a drink,” he says.
“No,” I say. “I can’t. I’m writing.”
“Are you really writing?” he asks. “Very good. I’m very impressed. I’ll leave you to it.”
“I’m not really writing,” I say. “I’m watching Princess Diana tribute videos on Youtube. But I’m going to start writing any minute now. I think I’m drunk. A little bit. Well, I think I must be drunk. I’ve had a litre of wine, and, plus I keep on crying whenever they show her fluffed up sloaney hair from the 1980s but laughing whenever they show the squashed up car, it got properly squashed up, you probably could’ve fit it inside a Kinder Egg.”
“That’s your dark British humour,” he says, approvingly.
“I think she was definitely murdered,” I say.
“You think?” he says.
“I can see it in the Queen’s cold eyes,” I say.
“She was just a silly tart,” he says, nonchalantly. “Would they really have bothered killing her? That silly… bimbo.”
“She’d stopped fancying white men,” I say. “It happens to a lot of white women, as they get older. She was really into Muslims. And she was only 36, she would’ve had more than enough time to get herself impregnated. And I don’t believe the King of England could’ve had a Muslim half-brother! And plus Prince Charles can be Head of the Church of England now. They made him a widow, retroactively, coz Lady Di died. So yeah, I reckon the Queen had her murdered. I think they put Vaseline in the seat-belt nozzle.”
“You’re so cute and British sometimes,” he says. “You really think Princess Diana was murdered. That’s so sweet.”
“I don’t really think it,” I say, sullenly. “I don’t think it scientifically or anything. I just think she probably was, and even if she wasn’t, they would’ve had to have had her killed in the end, anyway. I’d better go. I have to write four stories tonight, and it’s already 11pm, and I haven’t written a thing.”
“Yeah, okay,” he says.
“I wonder if the NSA is listening to us,” I say, before he hangs up.
“They probably are,” he says. “They probably think you should stop watching Diana videos and do a bit more writing. They probably think you’re one right lazy bitch.”
The thing is, Lady Di’s having been murdered is a bit like astrology – I don’t believe in it, not really – in fact, I don’t believe in it all – and – this is a terrible thing to write, this is the most anti-feminist statement I have ever made in public – I wouldn’t like a boyfriend of mine to believe in it – I wouldn’t be able to respect him enough to suck his dick – but I do enjoy pretending I do for conversational purposes – and, for the time while the conversation about Di having been done in and/or astrology being true is actually taking place, I totally forget, sometimes for minutes at a time, that I don’t actually believe in it.
I can literally talk for hours on end about Aquarius and Libra and rising signs and moon signs and how much I hate all Cancerians and stuff. Maybe I’m not as bad at small talk as I think I am. Maybe I just need to steer the conversation away from rape and abortion and onto horoscopes and that fatal car crash in Paris, and the Queen of England, and her cold, hard eyes, glittering judgementally like she’s Lady Macbeth, only she didn’t have to get her hands dirty.