sometimes some strange shit happens


I didn’t really think about it too much at the time. It was momentarily strange and then the day kicked in and it was nothing at all.

Also, I have been dreaming so much lately it feels like I have a sort of underwordly/hall-of-mirrors/phantasmic other life thing going on. It sounds all very exotic when I describe it, but really it’s just a bit weird. Dream déjà vu is dumb because there’s no way of getting to the bottom of it.  

But none of this dream stuff has anything to do with the strange shit. Because the strange shit has been corroborated and dreams really can’t be. They’re just dreams, whatever you care to make of them.

Back in the days when I first started Frankie, I mapped out the plot for maximum melodrama (because I figure if you suck at plot then you can inject a few crescendoes — a showy surface ripple on dead water, if you like — with some carefully placed swooning and a few doses of possibly ironic emotion-overkill).

And let me get one thing straight, just quickly. It wasn’t autobiographical. Well, not particularly autobiographical. But no sooner had I got the plot more or less in order…… it started to resemble, well, life. It was quite disconcerting. I was deliberately outlandish in my imaginings and life still had a way of trumping and belittling my tale. All that stuff about the truth being stranger than fiction and life imitating art I’d hitherto taken for rhetorical cuteness.

To be honest, in my own skewed way I was a bit fucked off at life for doing that to me. Making me look all hackneyed when I thought of it first! (oh, but who’s really going to believe me… and what does it matter now, so many years on…) and a bit callously magpie-ish, ghoulish, even, stealing storylines from the misfortunes of those closest to me (when – honestly – Frankie had nothing whatsoever to do with them in the first place). 

But while all this may have seemed strange and unfair to me once upon a time, this isn’t the strange shit, either.

So, enough. The strange shit, then.

Last Thursday morning it was my birthday. (Actually it was my birthday all day Thursday but it’s the morning we’re concerned with here.) I woke some time around 7 in the morning to a mechanical-sounding rendition of happy birthday. In my semi-somnolent state I thought Simon was holding one of those singing birthday cards over me. (Not an unreasonable thought — those cards are quite popular amongst the seniors in my family — last year my grandparents gave me one that serenaded me with a breathy and somewhat surprising rendition of happy birthday, Mr President… )

But Simon wasn’t holding anything over me. He was as surprised as I was. It was coming from my radio alarm clock.

But even that would only be a mild coincidence if my radio alarm clock had actually ever been tuned to an actual station. It’s not, though, and pretty much never has been. Every morning I wake deliberately to high volume static (some days with a tinge of Polynesia wafting in and out).

I have found the most noxious noise that exists on the airwaves and I have made it my morning birdsong. I don’t think I would ever make it out of bed otherwise.

But on my birthday my radio played happy birthday. A tinny, robotic kind of happy birthday. But it was unmistakeably happy birthday.

Every morning since I have waited for another sign, some more evidence of strange shit afoot. But nothing. Just dream-shaking noise interspersed with fragments of a language I can’t make out.


3 Responses to “sometimes some strange shit happens”

  1. 1 Simon Sweetman

    it actually then kicked in to the Stevie Wonder song “Happy Birthday” – even stranger and true(r)

  2. birthday cards that are personlized are the best in my opinion, they really come from the bottom of the heart of the sender;,;

  3. i love to receive birthday cards specially if they are custom built birthday cards -‘,

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