Curry chips and fandom.

You can meet another artist and they’ll ask how’s your writing, and you’ll tell them, and they won’t listen, and they’ll say we must go for coffee someday, and they’ll promise to buy your book, and then they’ll fuck off somewhere. And they haven’t a notion of doing the coffee, never mind buy the book. And then you’re having a curry chips and this fella bullocks over, puts his hands on the table, and says: ‘Howya, Micky!’

            He was well drunk, jeans too big, bloodshot eyes, jowls like a St. Bernard. Worse still, I hadn’t a clue who he was, so I said: ‘How’s things?’

            ‘Fuckin mighty.’

            ‘Great to hear it. Are ya still workin away?’

            He wasn’t much of a clues man cos he said: ‘I am. Same fuckin place, sure what can you do?’

            ‘What can ya do?’

            ‘And you? Are ya still writing?’

            ‘I am.’

            ‘I read your last book.’

            ‘Which one?’

            ‘The one in February. Fuck it sure, I read them all.’

            ‘Good man. Did you like the last one?’

            ‘Fuckin cracked. Mighty ridin’ in it.’

            ‘There was a bit alright.’

            ‘But it was a good story too.’

            ‘Thanks.’

            ‘Any Plays comin?’

            ‘I’m workin on a few things.’

            ‘I saw Nally on Youtube.’

            ‘Did ya?’

            ‘I did. Fuckin loved it. Hard to believe ye managed it with that fuckin lockdown but it worked.’

            ‘Thanks.’

            ‘The actors were fuckin mighty. How’s your chips?’

            ‘Lovely. I got them in the van over there.’

            He looked over, suspicious, like he was ready to accuse the van of trying to hide. ‘I wonder will they sell me a burger?’

            ‘Sure ask them.’

            ‘I fuckin will. I’m fulla porther. Drinkin since yesterday morning.’

            ‘What’s the occasion?’

            ‘Sure don’t ya know? Life. What else?’

            ‘True.’

            ‘And c’mere, whatever happened with the film that time?’

            ‘Tiger Raid?’

            ‘Yeah. I went up to see that in Galway. It was fuckin class.’

            ‘It’s still goin. You can buy it or rent it on Google Movies and all that craic.’

            ‘Twas some craic that night. That Gleeson fella can fairly act.’

            ‘He can, nice lad too.’

            ‘I’d say so. Are ya still teaching?’

            ‘An odd time.’

            ‘Dose I’d say?’

            ‘Tis grand.’

            ‘I couldn’t teach now. Fuck that. Gimme a kango and I’m happy, how the fuck do you sit at a computer all day?’

            ‘Different strokes, I suppose…’

            ‘Will ya have a pint?’

            ‘Still off it.’

            ‘Are ya fuck?’

            ‘I fuckin am.’

            ‘How long done now?’

            ’11 years I think. 10 anyway. Kinda losing count these days…’

            ‘Christ almighty, I wouldn’t last two days. You must be loaded. Selling all them books and films and shtuff and not drinkin?’

            ‘Writing’s the easy part, making money off it is more complicated.’

            ‘I fuckin bought them anyway.’

            ‘You did, good man.’  

            He stood looking at the chip van, stars in the night sky behind him. Aroma of cooking oil and vinegar mixed with ketchup. He said: ‘I think I’ll have a burger and five or six more pints and fuck off home.’

            ‘Sounds like a plan.’

            ‘I’ll be sick as a dog tomorrow.’

            ‘I don’t miss that.’

            ‘Christ. Shtop. Keep writing anyway. I want to read the next one. And make more fuckin films.’

            ‘I will.’

            ‘Fuckin do. I’m not into any of that other fancy shite but I like your shtuff.’

            ‘Sound, thanks.’

            ‘G’luck, Micky.’

            ‘Sound. G’luck.’

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