The Replacements

All pics @ Brett Lloyd

Bunny’s been acting strange lately. I think he’s beginning to get annoyed by my constant Skype calls and emails, repeatedly asking HAVE YOU FOUND A NEW ME? Normally he just replies something cryptic, like ‘I have no emotions’ or ‘I just came,’ but this morning was different. This morning he said: I think it’s time I told you about Mona.

Bunny went through a brief phase a few months back where he talked obsessively about his fantasy of having a “cool old lady girlfriend.” I didn’t take him seriously. People say a lot of shit they don’t mean all the time. I dismissed this claim like I dismiss 90% of what is said around me. I guess he wasn’t joking.

How old is she?

Sixty-three.

That’s gross.

Really? I thought you of all people would be more open minded.

Do you fuck?

It’s not like that.

But I mean, it’s kind of a joke, right? You two aren’t serious.

I’m going to her country house.

Bunny met Mona at a charity shop in Kennington where she regularly volunteers. He bought one of her dead husband’s suits. She thought it looked just marvelous on him, and invited him back to her house to try on some more of Roger’s (AKA the dead guy’s) clothes, which she was slowly but surely getting rid of. Bunny now has an entirely new wardrobe.

You disgust me.

Is it weird that I’m sort of into the idea of being the new Roger? Like I wouldn’t mind if Mona called me that. Roger, I mean.

She’s gunna kill you and eat you.

When she looks at me sometimes she doesn’t break eye contact for, like, ten minutes. I swear. I like her because she’s so different to everyone else I know. Yesterday I walked passed the kebab shop near our squat and Simon was inside, writing out their menu in exchange for food. If I’m going to surround myself with people like Simon, I also need someone like Mona.

I hang up and stare at my computer screen, not blinking, until my eyes go blurry. Through white mist I imagine myself crumpling up the screen, as one would a discarded piece of paper. I watch the LCD splinter and break, jagged bits of shrapnel filling the air like an ash cloud. It looks like snow. I sit motionless for what seems like days but is actually a few minutes. Somewhere in the distance a car alarm sirens, breaking the silence and setting off a wave of kinetic energy that reminds me that I’m here and alive and a person.

I blink and suddenly I’m walking down the street to a nearby bar to meet some people I kind of know but not really. I guess this is normal when you’re new to a city. At the bar a woman with long, poker straight black hair and bushy eyebrows sits down to me. She says her name is Jutka and do I want to go back to her apartment because she has tons of Adderall and this weird Chinese liquor that gets you, like, soooo fucked up. I find this invitation a bit weird considering we’ve only known each other for 3.2 seconds. I have a feeling this might be a sex thing. Still, I’m in the market for new friends who have similar interests to me, which it seems like she does, so I nod my head yes yes yes.

I rest my head on Jutka’s kitchen table as she crushes up the sky blue pill with her library card. She sculpts the pretty power into two even lines. I always feel a little bit guilty taking Adderall recreationally—after all it is the sacred fruit of concentration—but I also just really like being high, so I smile and sniff.

Ten minutes later I’m lying on her bed. The world seems bighter than it did before. I can see and think clearly. Or at least I think I can. I realize that it’s my turn—time for me to uphold my end of this unspoken arrangement. Give and take, I think. I roll over to face Jutka, offer her a stupid smile and lean in. She’s terrified. “Whoa. WHOA!” she shouts, her arm outstretched, covering my lips. “I am NOT into girls. Like AT ALL. Sorry if you got the wrong impression. I just… WHOA.”

Jutka is not only not a lesbian, but she is also, it seems, vaguely homophobic. It’s one thing to be rejected; it’s another to be rejected by someone you didn’t even want in the first place.

I walk outside and the streets are calm. Sometimes it feels so nice to be alone. And as I walk home, stamping my heavy, tired feet against the pavement, the dawn rains down on me like crisp blue flakes and for the millionth time I think, Weird… where am I?

 

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6 Responses to The Replacements

  1. bea. says:

    The writing on this is stunning. Feel shitty more often or something.

  2. Alex Page says:

    Not only is the writing stunning. You make me want to read even more from you. It's amazing. And I love what you wrote.

  3. eppie says:

    you should write a book. i would buy it, and then i would probably read it, because i'm assuming it would be good.was the chinese liquor called NG KA PY by chance?

  4. boldbearings says:

    I'll 2nd that, the blog is long enough to be a shortbook. Maybe two, and I would so buy a copy.Also, she obviously wanted you, she just got nervous ;P

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