My boyfriend is cleverer than me, in every way. I know he is, because his idea of a good night out is going to either the Schau– or the Volksbühne and watching some Germans get naked and pretend to kill a baby and/or perform Schiller. I’m just sat there, next to him, wincing and flinching and shuddering and stuff.
He took me to see this play at the Schaubühne once where they spent half a fucking hour killing this kid in a fucking Kinderwagen by throwing bricks at it. It lasted forever. I put my head on his shoulder and kept my eyes squeezed tightly shut the whole time, secretly I was thinking about that bit in Mamma Mia when Julie Walters comes onto that guy at the wedding by singing him “Take A Chance on Me” and crawling over the table.
“Why did it take them half an hour to kill that kid?” I said when we got out. “I hate it whenever you choose whatever we watch at the theatre. It’s bad enough we have to watch them killing a kid, but do they have to take so long to do it? I could kill a kid in three minutes. They’re only little. They should’ve just broken its neck.”
“Actually, I thought it was really powerful,” said my boyfriend.
“They could’ve just shook it,” I said, sullenly. “How much do you think that Louise Whatserface shook that baby for? Not half a fucking hour, she would’ve got repetitive strain injury or something.”
My idea of a good night out is going to see Mamma Mia, Grease, Les Miserables, easy-peasy stuff like that. Maybe a thriller or romantic comedy. I’m an entertainment girl, you know? And what I like about entertainment is that things happen QUICKER than in real life. I like to watch things happening faster than they do in real life. I like that. I think it’s good. Life is slow enough as it is. I remember one time, when I went back to England, leaving him alone for a week or so, and my boyfriend watched a black and white film from Hungary or Romania or somewhere and – get this – it lasted six and a half hours! And it was black and white but it wasn’t from the olden days, it was from the early 1990s.
“What did you do while I was in England?” I asked him, when I got back to Germany.
“Oh, I saw a really great film, actually. It was black and white – from Hungary or Romania somewhere. And it was quite long – about six and a half hours. But it was really good. It was really powerful.”
“What happened in it?”
“Nothing that much really happened in it, to be honest. There were just lots of close-ups and that.”
“There were a lot of close-ups?”
“At one point someone made an omelette. And it took them ages to make the omelette. About 20 minutes or so.”
I looked at my boyfriend and I guess the way to describe my emotions would be a mixture of incomprehension and rage. But mainly rage.
“It took them 20 minutes to make an omelette? Oh my God. Jamie Oliver can make a three-course dinner in half an hour and they’re spending 20 minutes on a stupid sodding bleeding omelette.”
So he’s really clever. You know. Plus he knows ALL THE WORDS THERE ARE IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE. You know the kind of words I mean, “tenacious” and “pugnacious” and “mendacious” and “rapacious”, words like that. He knows them all, man. I ask him and he tells me and then I forget what they actually mean again about three seconds later. He’s so clever, man. I don’t know how he finds out what all those words mean. I never see him reading the dictionary, ever. He just knows.
But there’s another side to him, you know. There’s a simple side to him, too. A real simple side. Sometimes I think he’s actually a really simple guy. Like, for example, when we watched the semi-final for Eurovision, and Spain came on, he sighed irritably and said: “I hate it when they sing in their own language. It’s much better when they sing in English. Then you know what they’re going on about.” Or when, on the night of Eurovision itself, I was trying on dresses before I went out the door, and in one of the dresses you could see half my bra, and so I decided to change, and then he said: “I like it when I can see a bit of your bra out the top of your dress. It makes me feel happy to look at you when I can see your bra poking out the top of your dress.” I looked at him and smiled. He’s so clever, I thought, this boy is so clever – but a little bit simple, too.
Then I made him an omelette and went out the door. It took me about 17.5 minutes. He ate it rapaciously, of course. But then again, I am really good at making omelette