Monday, August 07, 2006

Feline wrestlers and Viennese bears

Both readers of this weblog will be relieved to hear that I'm contemplating relinquishing my post as senior writer and handing over the reins to my two trusty assistants, Kentucky Wildcat and The Man With Many Aliases. There are two reasons for this. Less important is that these two brahmamachines appear to have launched a coup d'histoire, so I will abdicate gracefully and make it a bloodless coup. (Although possibly the Crunchy Granola Suite Boogier's role in the coup might be on the wane, as he has sent Emma and I a joint-email informing us that he has taken a vow of web silence. I hope he is joking, because we have all been enjoying his contributions, even if one or two readers have had to pack in their jobs and go part-time to give themselves enough time to read them. The problem seems to be that Emma has let him know that the Web Administrator has asked her to ask him to shorten his postings, because of congestion on the superhighway. He seems rather put out about this, but fingers crossed he will continue to post, more concisely, rather than letting his talent go to waste).

The more pressing reason for my proposed withdrawal from the role of chief diarist is because I will need to devote the time to construction of my first novel. This plan has been brewing since I was introduced last year to the works of John Irving, and watching Walk The Line at the weekend has further sharpened my interest. (If you can't see what the movie has to do with it, read on). Having read The Hotel New Hampshire and A Widow For One Year, I'm now midway through The World According To Garp, and it has just struck me that I'm actually just reading the same (excellent) book for the third time. It's such a simple recipe. One just writes 500 pages about oneself, in which nothing happens other than that the main character (ie oneself) gets dragged into a few bizarre, and occasionally shocking, events. One spends a bit of time in New York, in New England, on Long Island, and in Vienna. One spends part of the time in schools and hotels. One plays squash (if this aspect can't drag my champion assistant blogger back from his self-imposed exile, then nothing will) and one wrestles, preferably with bears. One becomes semi-involved in a rape. One spends time with continental prostitutes. Several of one's nearest and dearest die in shocking circumstances. But, most importantly, one writes a novel, about oneself, in which nothing happens (apart from ... , see above), in which the main character is given, and takes, many opportunities to deny that the novel is autobiograpical and that it is about anything. So anyway, I've just got to write a novel about myself writing a novel about myself writing a novel about myself etc., and obviously I've got to create a few distinguishing features to sprinkle among the bears, wrestlers and prostitutes to give credence to the many claims the book contains that it isn't about me (or indeed anything, which in my case it probably won't be), and I think the obvious one is to create an alternative persona for myself. So, and this is where Johnny Cash comes in, I think that the alter ego can become so proud of his ability to sing familiar words to previously unheard melodies that he creates a stage persona for himself. This, obviously, involves a cat, rather than a bear. The cat has to be - yes, you've guessed it - Sebastian (see my entry in Meet The Gang, and Sebastian/Sid's appearance in the current photo gallery). So basically the hero of the book comes on stage with Sebastian lying around his/my neck, asleep but still digging his claws into his/my shoulders. And his/my signature tune runs thus:-

"You wonder why I always dress in cat,
Why you always see Sebastian on my neck.
And why does my appearance seem to have a feline tone?
Well, there's a reason for the cat that I have on.

I wear him for the poor and beaten down,
Living on the hopeless, hungry side of town (Moulton Paddocks);
I wear him for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime
But is there because he's a victim of the times (ie not Richard Sims, because he hasn't started to pay for his crimes yet - but he will, just as soon as the vice squad catch up with him) ... ".

So, anyway, that's a start on my novel. But, as you've probably worked out, it's just a start and nothing more, and a pretty poor start at that. So I'm going to need to spend as much time on the project as I can. And if anyone can give me some help with details on wrestling, squash, bears, prostitutes or Vienna, please speak up. What would be perfect would be if someone has wrestled a bear in a squash court in Vienna as a warm-up exercise for holding a conversation with a prostitute. Richard Sims is about the only person I can think of who might have done just that, but he's still alive, so he probably hasn't.

Enough of that, and on to project number two, which is maintaining my ever more flimsy pretence of being a racehorse trainer. Hopefully I will be able to give some credence to this facade this week by sending out SIX runnners. The eliminator permitting, Lady Suffragette will run at Yarmouth on Wednesday, By Storm and Limit Down will run there on Thursday afternoon before Chilly Cracker resumes at Folkestone in the evening, and then Brief Goodbye (Newmarket) and Rem Time (Lingfield) will both run on Saturday. That's rather a daunting thought: a month's worth of runners in four days. We are likely to have Frankie Pickard on Lady Suffragette, Kirsty Milczarek on By Storm, Micky Fenton on Chilly Cracker and Brief Goodbye, with the riders of Limit Down and Rem Time yet to be engaged. Tagdh O'Shea was kind enough to give us some help on Saturday morning and I hope I will be able to reward him with some support shortly, but that will probably have to wait until next week.

And in the meantime, 'til things are brighter, I'm the man in cat.

11 comments:

alamshar2 said...

This is a terrible load of shite. It's the worst nonsense I've read since I gave up on Ulysses on page 12. It's so bad you could nominate it for the Booker Prize; it would probably win. Just because the narrator in The Hotel New Hampshire is called John Berry doesn't mean that you could write anything about bears or Austria. You'd have more chance of pulling it off if you changed your name to Leopold Bloom. And you'd probably get sent more horses.

Just a couple of suggestions, though. If you ever manage to sell the film rights to your novel (and that's assuming you ever write it, which is unlikely), you could get arrange for Richard Sims to play the bear. You'd only have to prevent him from shaving for a couple of days, and you wouldn't even have to alter his shape. Plus he wouldn't need a stunt double for the squash scenes. The sex scenes might be more of a problem.

Secondly, you mention that Richard is perhaps the only person who might possibly have experience of the various topics with which you intend to fill your ludicrous book. What about James Dowsett? He's sure to have a few experiences to pass on, although I don't know that he's ever wrestled.

Kentucky Wildcat said...

John please do not give up your blogging......... If you need to meet Prostitutes i can suggest a drive to Bradfords' Lumb Lane area. You may even see Bear bottoms for a NF/NF (No foal, no fee) Rate. ...Perhaps if you start entering your horses at the Northern Tracks this could be possible. It may also be a way of dropping them down the h'cap - speak to Sir Mark about this I am sure he calculated a certain number of hours in a horsebox could deplete a equine rating by a certain number of pounds ?

Stato-man said...

Well I hope our chief diarist will not be abdicating as he fuells all the brahmas on the site!
I also note our chief diarist's postings vastly exceed all blogs put together which hopefully won't be discouraged by our watchful friend in web administration.

I also hope our friendly web admin guru doesn't frown on the prospect of smuttiness in the forthcomong novel for mentioning prostitutes in Vienna.
What do you say to that KYWC?

Certainly Alamshar2 has had far too much to say.
I wouldn't be disillusioned by that negetive spray Wath.
Anyone fortunate enough to have read excerpts from your Royal Gait biography would be looking forward to the life and times of the mighty BHS handler.
I'm sure a plethera of brahmas, odd-beat yarns and generally unique "wathness" will make for great reading for all sheilas and cobbers alike.
I for one, will be happy to offer "wathever" assisatnce and encouragement can help the cause.
I am equally certain I could remind you of some momentous occasions from your enormous past that would be worthy of revelation!

KYWC, whilst on the suject of prostitution and as a blogger familiar with terms of intercourse in the thoroughbred industry, you may be interested to learn we are sending one of our mares to HOLD THAT TIGER this season.
I hear his first-crop foals sold very well in the states and I have a friend here who used to travel with the horse and groom him at Ashford so I am hoping this will impress you!
If not, and subject to the web administrator's cautious approval, I might yet be able to write some more ND or ABBA lyrics online for you!

Stato-man said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Kentucky Wildcat said...

Hold That Mieow

This morning The Evil Genius text me and asked me why John and Emma where having a lovers' tiff last night. It appears Emma may have found a train ticket, GNER, destination Bradford. Has the rock (JB) sunk and gone looking for Lumb Lane? Has the rock decided to re-live his time in Vienna with a Northern alternative? John are you following in Colin Farrells' footsteps and trying to do background research of one of your novel personalities that does not really exisit? Quite frankly I am not sure what the web-administrator will think about mentioning smuttiness on site? I had to take the child lock off my internet connection before logging onto the Beverley House Stables webpage today.........!

Neil and I will definatley have our own Jambouree whether it will be on 'The Bulls' Karoeke or joining David in 'The Horse Shoes' to sing Robbie Williams... i do not know.

Anyhows good news...The Rolling Stones are playing Churchill Downs 29th September if you or any1 else are interrested in singing Honkie Tonk woman with me? Oh and yes, The BC, not Big Cat, The Breeders' Cup is 4th November Churchill so get tuned up for that.

As for Hold That Tiger, well i did like him as a racehorse, he had a strong finish, and I am impressed by your comments. His yearlings were not that well framed compared to some of these USA giants and sold ok at Fasig-Tipton, Ky. Tonight, Lot 25 at Saratoga may fetch some brass. I had my eye on pinhooking a filly at Fasig for the Breeze-ups but she got snapped up before i managed to twist the boss' arm hard enough. Please tell your friend that I also worked for Coolmore in a fashion ... it was with the National Hunt division. It was excellent.

Big mieow.

D.D. Fan Club said...

Three cheers for the blog administrator.

Stato-man said...

Well KYWC,
I think this lover's tiff was on the cards. I can understand poor Emma having to tolerate the wath's latest obsession. Emma will now bear months of exhaustive brainpower as this novel gathers momentum.
Actually, this was on the cards for eight months as Emma had spent six months last year just mucking out the loungeroom with the kitchen floor in disarray and the office in it's pre-Warrington street state since relocating!

I too am bemused by this blog administrator.
I had a far less noxious blog (would not have required a childlock!) removed in the last few days.

Very glad to hear you're a starter for this brahmafest somewhere sometime. Joining Dave at the horse shoes wouldn't be a bad result if we were barricaded out of BHS.
Churchill Downs does sound like a great place to be on the 29th so could make for a nice weekend sojourn if I were in New York instead of Nth Caulfield!
Sadly, will also have to miss BC as I have a wedding to attend as spectator (not as victum) in North Queensland that weekend.
But you could always attend Melb Cup day with Emma and Wath and all us ferril aussies.
I will probably see my "hold that tiger" friend at Swettenham (formerly Collingrove) next weekend. I will ask him if he remembers KYWC from the Nat Hunt division!

Stato-man said...

Good evening bloggers.
I think the Wath will find amusement in learning that my weak Australian veneer got the better of me in the last 24 hours and I have been home resting up most of this afternoon. I have to be in form for the Nth East Vic breeders' annual awards night at Nagambie tomorrow night - black tie, networking with the likes of Ken Aldous and Co and plenty of sheilas!

This might come as a surprise blogging about something other than Brahmafests and Neil Diamond songs but I do think some acknowledgement needs to be made of the pending return to racing of Jack Dawson from his long layoff. I for one sincerely hope he may come back to bring some well-deserved success for our favourite yard and wish the Waths and connections all the very best next Tuesday. Just make sure you don't miss the four day declaration Wath!

I will be interested to see/hear how the week got on with all the runners and as I will be away for two days now (assuming today's kidneystone-syndrome disipates overnight) and I will also be with Brief Goodbye in spirit tomorrow night, W/Post time.
And KYWC, evil genius and other prime BHS celebrities, you can look forward to a (concise)report of the happenings of my weekend next week!

alamshar2 said...

I echo Stato-man's pleasure in seeing Jack Dawson's name among next week's intended runners. He was always so durable so let's hope that age hasn't started to weary him.

On the subjects of Stato-man and of being wearied, does anyone out there know who this Stato-man is? He goes on a bit, doesn't he? I was pleased to see that the Web Administrator had removed one of his posts, because that really was a weird one. It made even less sense than even the worst of John's stuff. And that's saying something.

Good to see By Storm run so well. She looks tiny. Interested to note that she and Chilly Cracker are full-sisters. They seem very different types.

The Shergar Cup meeting should be a good one. Hopefully it should go ahead without too many non-runners, as long as not too many of the UK & Irish team are arrested in the next 24 hours.

Kentucky Wildcat said...

Dear all at Beverley House Stables and fellow bloggers (sorry Neil we cannot adress each other directly anymore - web adminstrators request),

Expect a full report next week of the Cat's adventure to Chicago for the Arlington Million.....

In the mean time have a great weekend.

lestertoo said...

Rumour has it in Newmarket that the troops at Beverley House Stables have had a whip round to buy the Master of that establishment a "Cricket Box" as the result of an eye watering mishap involving Sebastian.Might I suggest the troops contacting the Pakistani cricket team (thus being thrifty) cause the way things are going (as the result of cheating) they wont be needing theirs in the near future.